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March 1975

Overview of Recent Research in Depression: Integration of Ten Conceptual Models Into a Comprehensive Clinical Frame

Author Affiliations

From the Department of Psychiatry, University of Tennessee College of Medicine and the Tennessee Psychiatric Hospital and Institute, Memphis (Dr. Akiskal); and the Department of Psychiatry, University of Wisconsin School of Medicine, the Psychiatric Research Institute of Wisconsin, and the Wisconsin Primate Laboratory, Madison (Dr. McKinney).

Arch Gen Psychiatry. 1975;32(3):285-305. doi:10.1001/archpsyc.1975.01760210019001

Disciplinary fragmentation and nosological and semantic controversies have obscured the impressive advances made in the area of depressive disorders during the past decade. This article is an attempt to translate data derived from psychodynamic, sociobehavioral, and neurobiologic research into a clinically meaningful framework.

We review ten models of depression with special emphasis on newer models supported by empirical and experimental studies, and present a new model, which incorporates and synthesizes findings from different schools. Depressive illness is conceptualized as the feedback interaction of three sets of variables at chemical, experiential, and behavioral levels with the diencephalon serving as the field of action.