Depression is the most commonly diagnosed mental illness, yet antidepressants are either effective only after prolonged treatment or remain largely ineffective. Mazella et al. identified a naturally occurring peptide, spadin, as a fast-acting antidepressant that interacts with, and blocks the activity of, a mood-regulating potassium channel, TREK-1. Mice lacking TREK-1 are resistant to depression and exhibit behavior similar to mice treated with antidepressants. Spadin-treated mice displayed a similar resistance to depression as TREK-1-deficient mice within only four days, as opposed to the several weeks necessary to respond to conventional therapies. Short-term spadin treatment induced classical antidepressant markers including increased CREB expression and neurogenesis. Unlike current depression medication, spadin’s rapid onset of action makes it a strong candidate to develop novel and more successful antidepressant medication.
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RESEARCH HIGHLIGHT| 07 July 2010
Mental health: spadin, a fast-acting antidepressant
Online Issn: 1754-8411
Print Issn: 1754-8403
Dis Model Mech (2010) 3 (7-8): 398.
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Mental health: spadin, a fast-acting antidepressant. Dis Model Mech 7 July 2010; 3 (7-8): 398. doi:
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