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J Psychosom Res. 2002 Oct;53(4):873-6.

Depression and immune function: central pathways to morbidity and mortality.

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  • 1Department of Psychiatry, The Ohio State University College of Medicine, 1670 Upham Drive, Columbus, OH 43210, USA. kiecolt-glaser.l@osu.edu

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

The increased morbidity and mortality associated with depression is substantial. In this paper, we review evidence suggesting that depression contributes to disease and death through immune dysregulation.

METHOD:

This review focuses on recent human studies addressing the impact of depression on immune function, and the health consequences of those changes.

RESULTS:

There is growing evidence that depression can directly stimulate the production of proinflammatory cytokines that influence a spectrum of conditions associated with aging, including cardiovascular disease, osteoporosis, arthritis, type 2 diabetes, certain cancers, periodontal disease, frailty, and functional decline. Additionally, depression can down-regulate the cellular immune response; as a consequence, processes such as prolonged infection and delayed wound healing that fuel sustained proinflammatory cytokine production may be promoted by depression.

CONCLUSIONS:

These direct and indirect processes pose the greatest health risks for older adults who already show age-related increases in proinflammatory cytokine production. Thus, aging interacts with depression to enhance risks for morbidity and mortality.

PMID:
12377296
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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