A new tool to help those with depression and bipolar disorder.

I believe we all know people who currently have depression or bipolar disorder. When they are on their medicines, they appear as normal as most other people we know. It is hard to notice anything out of the ordinary.

However, their good feeling sometimes leads them to believe they are just as normal as others and stop taking their medicine, resulting in their depression or bipolar days.

Our body chemistry changes as things happen to us. Our thoughts create chemicals reflecting our moods. Scientists believed when they could isolate a biomarker of a disease, such as bipolar disorder, they could measure the effectiveness of any medicines given to treat it.


https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/10.3389/fncel.2019.00363/full Brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) is a protein that is critical in support of neuron growth. Long-term memory is reliant on BDNF. Blood tests can measure BDNF. Lower BDNF levels indicate depression or bipolar disorder.

Diagnosing Depression and Bipolar Disorder

https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/a-blood-test-could-diagnose-depression-and-bipolar-disorder Mature BDNF (mBDNF) decays in the presence of psychological stress associated with depression. The calculation of the amount of inflammation caused by psychological stress is critical to quantify the level of stress of depression.

ProBDNF, a building block to mBDNF, clings to a unique receptor in the brain that causes inflammation and nerve degeneration. The calculation of the exact levels of proBDNF, apart from mBDNF, enables scientists to quantify the underlying state of mental stress and neuron degeneration.


https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0022395620311298#! A paper published in the Journal of Psychiatric Research described the testing protocols that permitted exact measurements of proBDNF. This test is a biomarker for depression and bipolar disorder.

This level of discernment can provide accurate feedback on the efficacy of the drugs used to treat the disease. The study used 200 patients, with half diagnosed with depression or bipolar disorder and the other half with normal mental health.

Testing shows that four out of five people with depression or bipolar disorder can be appropriately diagnosed with this blood test. The test did not identify approximately 20% of the test subjects previously diagnosed with either depression or bipolar disorder. Scientists are continuing to refine their testing to improve the accuracy of this test.


It is remarkable that an accurate biomarker for depression and bipolar disorder could be identified. The study was done with existing patients and is not representative of the general population. However, it is encouraging, and I believe of immense value for future extrapolations.

How to Increase BDNF?

https://daveasprey.com/increase-bdnf-brain-health/ BDNF levels decline with age/ BDNF levels kept in the normal ranges protects against neurodegenerative diseases. Exercise, meditation, deep sleep, and sunlight allow our bodies to generate higher levels of BDNF.

Stress, diet (excess sugar), and social isolation tend to block BDNF production. The link above provides more details about how to create and keep more BDNF as you grow older.

Live Longer & Enjoy Life! – Red O’Laughlin – RedOLaughlin.com


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