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January 1977

Endogenous Depression Improvement and REM Pressure

Author Affiliations

From the Georgia Mental Health Institute and the Department of Psychiatry, Emory University, Atlanta.

Arch Gen Psychiatry. 1977;34(1):96-97. doi:10.1001/archpsyc.1977.01770130098010

• In the treatment of endogenous depression by rapid eye movement (REM) sleep deprivation, depression improvement, measured on Hamilton and Global scales, correlated positively and significantly (P <.05) with REM pressure (increase of REM sleep stimulated by REM sleep deprivation). This dose-response relationship suggests that (1) REM pressure was an indicator of a process that mediated the antidepressant effects of REM sleep deprivation, and (2) since improvement varied with stimulation of REM sleep, an unknown stimulus of REM sleep is a naturally occurring, endogenous antidepressant.