Press Release of the Week: Psychotherapy for Depressed Rats

This week’s Press Release of the Week carries the headline: “Psychotherapy for depressed rats shows genes aren’t destiny“.

Issued by Northwestern University, the press release begins by saying:

CHICAGO — Genes are not destiny in determining whether a person will suffer from depression, reports a new Northwestern Medicine study. Environment is a major factor, and nurture can override nature.

RedeiWhen rats genetically bred for depression received the equivalent of rat “psychotherapy,” their depressed behavior was alleviated. And, after the depressed rats had the therapy, some of their blood biomarkers for depression changed to non-depressed levels.

“The environment can modify a genetic predisposition to depression,” said lead study investigator Eva Redei [pictured here], a professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine….

(Thanks to Ivan Oransky for bringing this to our attention.)

BONUS QUESTION: If you are a psychiatrist who successfully — and on a regular basis — supplies psychotherapy to rats, we would like to hear details of your methods and of your billing rates.