Research led by scientists at Yale University in New Haven, Conn, indicates that an enzyme called mitogen-activated protein kinase phosphatase 1 (MKP-1) is linked to major depressive disorder (MDD) and might point the way to a new treatment approach (Duric V et al. Nat Med. 2010;16:1328-1332).
Whole-genome expression profiling of postmortem human brain tissue from 21 individuals with depression and 18 healthy controls revealed that tissue from individuals with depression expressed increased levels of MKP-1. This enzyme removes phosphate groups from proteins and is a negative regulator of a signaling pathway involved in neuronal function.
Hampton T. New Depression Target. JAMA. 2010;304(21):2350. doi:10.1001/jama.2010.1717