About this Research Topic
In recent years a large body of data has accumulated suggesting that inflammation may play a role in the pathophysiological mechanisms underlying mental illnesses such as depression, bipolar disorder and schizophrenia. Consistently, classic anti-inflammatory drugs such as corticosteroids and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (particularly selective cyclooxygenase-2 inhibitors) were found to possess beneficial effects in patients with mood disorders and schizophrenia. Moreover, supporting evidence indicates that psychotropic medications affect inflammatory mediators' levels both in animals and humans.
Despite the large body of data that supports the "inflammation hypothesis" of mental disorders, many unanswered questions and controversies still exist. For example, i) many studies reported that inflammatory mediators' levels are not altered among mentally-ill patients; ii) while the vast majority of the data obtained from human studies examined peripheral tissues (especially blood), what is more pertinent to the study of psychiatric illnesses is data on brain tissue; iii) it is not understood how the effects of psychotropic drugs on inflammation influence their therapeutic efficacy and toxicity; and, iv) some studies revealed negative results regarding the effectiveness of anti-inflammatory compounds as a treatment for mental disorders.
This Research Topic will focus on the role of inflammation in the pathophysiology and treatment of mood disorders. We welcome the submission of original articles and review papers that cover the following subjects: effects of psychotropic drugs on inflammation; levels of inflammatory mediators in mood disorders patients; anti-inflammatory and anti-infectious drugs as potential treatment for mood disorders; and, genetic and epigenetic factors in association with mood disorders. We hope that it will expand the existing knowledge and answer unresolved questions pertinent to this subject.
Keywords: Mental Disorders, Psychotropic Drugs, Inflammation, Cytokines, Pharmacotherapy
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