Washington: A new research has revealed that a single dose of antidepressant produces dramatic changes in the functional architecture of the human brain.
The researchers from Max Planck Institute for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences said that brain scans taken of people before and after an acute dose of a commonly prescribed SSRI (serotonin reuptake inhibitor) reveal changes in connectivity within three hours.
Julia Sacher said that what they are seeing in medication-free individuals who had never taken antidepressants before may be an early marker of brain reorganization.
The whole-brain network analysis showed that one dose of the SSRI reduces the level of intrinsic connectivity in most parts of the brain, but Sacher and her colleagues observed an increase in connectivity within two brain regions, specifically the cerebellum and thalamus.
The researchers added that the new findings represent an essential first step toward clinical studies in patients suffering from depression and also plan to compare the functional connectivity signature of brains in recovery and those of patients who fail to respond after weeks of SSRI treatment.
The study is published in the Cell Press journal Current Biology.