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Salud mental

Print version ISSN 0185-3325


VEGA-RIVERA, Nelly Maritza et al. Estrogens-noradrenaline interactions: their role in the regulation of depression. Salud Ment [online]. 2013, vol.36, n.4, pp.331-336. ISSN 0185-3325.

Depression refers to a mood disorder characterized by deep sadness and loss of interest and pleasure. Epidemiologic studies show that this disorder represents a public health problem affecting 12% of the world population in a proportion of 2:1 of women to men. Depression is a complex disease in which it has been observed that the noradrenergic system appears to play an important role. Thus, a decrease in the noradrenergic tone, changes in noradrenaline (NA) synthesis, reduction in its turn-over, and modulation of its receptors can induce this disease. On the other hand, estrogens are a wide hormones family with multiple biologic functions which include those related to mood states. Clinical studies suggest that hormonal fluctuations, such as the premenstrual phase, puerperium and perimenopause, are associated with an increase in the vulnerability to depression. Conversely, estrogens have shown antidepressant effects in different preclinical models. Binding and electrophysiology studies suggest that estrogens are able to modulate noradrenergic transmission, through an increase of NA neurons' firing rate, a regulation of noradrenergic receptors and the synthesis and catabolism of this neurotransmitter. Additionally, behavioral studies support the interaction of estrogens with the noradrenergic system. Thus, the purpose of this review is to analyze the participation of noradrenalin, estrogens and their interaction in the treatment of depression in both, clinical and preclinical studies.

Keywords : Estrogens; adrenaline; depression.

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