Researchers Discover Why Antidepressants Dont Work For Many

01.14.10 | FL News Team

Researchers have figured out why antidepressants don't help about half of the people who take them. Most of the drugs work by boosting the level of serotonin in the brain. Scientists at Columbia University Medical Center have found that genetically engineered mice with too much of one kind of serotonin receptor in the brain were less likely to respond to the drugs. The same would be true of humans with a high number of serotonin-dampening neurons.

 The researchers believe their discovery could be useful to doctors as they try to determine whether a patient will respond to drugs such as Prozac and Zoloft. At least 27-million Americans take antidepressants daily. That's nearly double the figure reported in the mid-1990s.