Inflammation Can Fan the Flames of Depression

Chronic inflammation in the bloodstream can 'fan the flames' of depression, much like throwing gasoline on a fire, according to a new paper from researchers at Rice University and Ohio State University.

'Inflammation: Depression Fans the Flames and Feasts on the Heat' appeared in a recent edition of the American Journal of Psychiatry. The study reviewed 200 existing papers on depression and inflammation.

"In the health area of psychology at Rice, we're very focused on the intersection of health behavior, psychology and medicine," said Christopher Fagundes, an assistant professor of psychology and co-author of the paper. "One thing that we're particularly interested in is how stress affects the immune system, which in turn affects diseases and mental health outcomes, the focus of this paper."