Cytokines, Stress, and Depression (reprint of the 1st ed)

Cytokines, Stress, and DepressionCytokines, Stress, and Depression (Advances in Experimental Medicine and Biology) is devoted to the establishment of a link between cytokines and clinical depression.

Cytokines, Stress, and Depression is published by Springer and edited by Robert Dantzer, Emmanuelle E. Wollmann and Raz Yirmiya. It is based on the proceedings of a meeting that took place in Roscoff, France, on May 14–17, 1998. The purpose of the meeting, as stated in the preface was to bring together scientists working in the field to discuss “the converging evidence between the brain effects of cytokines and the immunological correlates of depression.”

Cytokines, the chemical messengers between immune cells play a key role in mediating inflammatory and immune responses. These diverse groups of proteins may be regarded as hormones of the immune system that control the proliferation, differentiation and activity of immune cells. Evidence accumulated over the last 2-3 decades indicates that cytokines are major players in the pathogenesis of atopic/allergic and autoimmune diseases, obesity and atherosclerosis, autism, chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS), fibromyalgia, Alzheimer’s disease, etc.

The rapid pace of ‘discovery’ of newer cytokines and the broader role they were found to play among immune cells led to a new terminology that assigns an ‘interleukin’ number to cytokines as their genes are sequenced. Little did anybody know at the time that these cytokines had anything to do with the brain or behavior?

Recent evidence, however, indicates that pro-inflammatory cytokines contribute to the pathogenesis of depression. Thus, treatment of patients with chronic hepatitis C and malignant melanoma with high doses of INF-α is often accompanied by symptoms of depression. Another major link with inflammatory states is the greatly increased incidence of depression in individuals suffering from chronic inflammatory disorders. An additional link with inflammatory states and cytokines, is the increased level of pro-inflammatory cytokines, such as IL-6 in subjects with depressive symptoms and syndromes.

In the Cytokines, Stress, and Depression the evidence for a cytokine connection in depressive illness as presented in this book is overwhelming: cytokines are associated with vegetative signs of depression; treatment with cytokines produces depressed mood and altered cognition; cytokine production is affected by stress; cytokines are associated with increased activity of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis and dysregulation of neurotransmitter metabolism; antidepressant treatment affects cytokine secretion; and so on.

Few selected chapters of Cytokines, Stress, and Depression are listed below:


  • Major Depression and Activation of The Inflammatory Response System
  • Cytokine Production in Depressed Patients
  • Mood and Cognitive Disorders in Cancer Patients Receiving Cytokine Therapy
  • Mechanisms of the Behavioural Effects of Cytokines
  • Effects of Cytokines on Glucocorticoid Receptor Expression And Function
  • Effects of Cytokines on Cerebral Neurotransmission
  • Inflammation and Brain Function under Basal Conditions and During Long-Term Elevation of Brain Corticotropin-Releasing Hormone Levels
  • Dynamic Regulation of Proinflammatory Cytokines
  • Anhedonic and Anxiogenic Effects of Cytokine Exposure
  • Stress, Depression, and The Role of Cytokines
  • Cytokines, “Depression Due to A General Medical Condition,” and Antidepressant Drugs
  • Cytokines, Stress, and Depression

Series: Advances in Experimental Medicine and Biology (Book 461); Paperback: 338 pages; Publisher: Springer; Softcover reprint of the original 1st ed. 1999 edition (March 23, 2013)

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