- A single dose an antidepressant is sufficient to produce dramatic changes in the human brain, according to a new study in the journal Current Biology.
- Researchers looked at three-dimensional images of patients' brains to assess what happened when medication-naive patients took an SSRI for the first time.
- According to the whole-brain network analysis, although one dose of an SSRI reduces the overall level of intrinsic connectivity, it increases connectivity in two regions of the brain -- the cerebellum and the thalamus.
There is some controversy surrounding the ability of antidepressants to "cure" depression over the long term. But the latest study published in the September 18 issue of Current Biology confirms the ability of antidepressants to modulate brain activity and have potentially profound, long-lasting effects on mood -- as long as patients are adherent and compliant.
The drug used in the study was Lexapro (escitalopram). Researchers hope to use the latest information to determine the differences between the brains of patients who respond to antidepressants and those who don't.