In language and arts depression is associated with darkness and grey and black colours. Everything looks grey when people feel blue.
There might be an empirical truth behind these idioms according to the findings of a research group at the University Hospital Freiburg in Germany, who combined neuropsychiatric and ophthalmologic investigations.
In earlier work they were able to demonstrate that depressed people do have difficulties with detecting black-and-white contrast differences.
In another study published in 2010 they focused on the response of the retina in depressed and healthy humans to varying black-and-white contrasts. Measuring the pattern of an electroretinogram, which is a kind of electrocardiogram (ECG) of the eye, they found dramatic reductions in response amplitudes of the eyes of depressed patients.
The signal was so strong that it was able to distinguish most depressed patients on a single case basis from healthy control subjects when looking at the electrophysiological measurement.
In the latest study just published in the renowned British Journal of Psychiatry (http://bjp.rcpsych.org/content/201/2/151.full) they now report that the abnormal retinal signal normalised following remission of depression. Therefore the objectively measurable retinal contrast gain might prove to be an objective state marker of depression.
Should these findings be replicated in further studies, this method could turn out to be a valuable tool to objectively measure the subjective state of depression. This could have far reaching implications for research as well as clinical diagnosis and therapy of depression.Kontakt:
Doreen Winkler | idw
Researchers release the brakes on the immune system
18.10.2017 | Rheinische Friedrich-Wilhelms-Universität Bonn
Norovirus evades immune system by hiding out in rare gut cells
12.10.2017 | University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine
University of Maryland researchers contribute to historic detection of gravitational waves and light created by event
On August 17, 2017, at 12:41:04 UTC, scientists made the first direct observation of a merger between two neutron stars--the dense, collapsed cores that remain...
Seven new papers describe the first-ever detection of light from a gravitational wave source. The event, caused by two neutron stars colliding and merging together, was dubbed GW170817 because it sent ripples through space-time that reached Earth on 2017 August 17. Around the world, hundreds of excited astronomers mobilized quickly and were able to observe the event using numerous telescopes, providing a wealth of new data.
Previous detections of gravitational waves have all involved the merger of two black holes, a feat that won the 2017 Nobel Prize in Physics earlier this month....
Material defects in end products can quickly result in failures in many areas of industry, and have a massive impact on the safe use of their products. This is why, in the field of quality assurance, intelligent, nondestructive sensor systems play a key role. They allow testing components and parts in a rapid and cost-efficient manner without destroying the actual product or changing its surface. Experts from the Fraunhofer IZFP in Saarbrücken will be presenting two exhibits at the Blechexpo in Stuttgart from 7–10 November 2017 that allow fast, reliable, and automated characterization of materials and detection of defects (Hall 5, Booth 5306).
When quality testing uses time-consuming destructive test methods, it can result in enormous costs due to damaging or destroying the products. And given that...
Using a new cooling technique MPQ scientists succeed at observing collisions in a dense beam of cold and slow dipolar molecules.
How do chemical reactions proceed at extremely low temperatures? The answer requires the investigation of molecular samples that are cold, dense, and slow at...
Scientists from the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics, using high precision laser spectroscopy of atomic hydrogen, confirm the surprisingly small value of the proton radius determined from muonic hydrogen.
It was one of the breakthroughs of the year 2010: Laser spectroscopy of muonic hydrogen resulted in a value for the proton charge radius that was significantly...
17.10.2017 | Event News
10.10.2017 | Event News
10.10.2017 | Event News
20.10.2017 | Information Technology
20.10.2017 | Materials Sciences
20.10.2017 | Interdisciplinary Research