Genetics and Depression

Depression is caused by many factors. One of the major factor being the psychological stress a person goes through. But how does a person succumb to the pressure was the question which puzzled many people. After many researches physicians came to a conclusion that there is a lot of involvement of the genes then it was expected to be. Genes are the qualities which we get from our ancestors. Genes are made of combined DNAs. Genes are responsible for giving us many qualities of our parents. Our physical and mental aspects are determined by the genes which we inherit.

Role of genes in Depression

Genes play a major role in people who are prone to depression. If the parents of a person have suffered any kind of depression then the person is may also be a victim of depression. This is because the pattern of thinking and the brain’s susceptibility to certain diseases are carried by the genes. If a person’s parent or sibling is a depression patient then the probability of the person getting effected by the disease is 1.5 to 3 times more. Bipolar disorder is the most common depressive disease which is inherited from parents. This is the same case in twins also. In twins if one twin is suffering from depression then there are high chances of the other twin also suffering from the same disease. The inheritance of depression varies depending on the intensity of the disease suffered by the parent and the type of depression. After many such studies scientists have closed in to a point where it is proved that genes and depression are very closely related.

Genetic depression caused in Twins

No two persons DNAs are similar excepting in one case. If the 2 siblings are twins then the DNA carried by both the twins is the same. This also points out that there are similar genes in their bodies. This will lead to the nature of the body functioning. If one of the sibling is suffering from depression then there are 70% chances of the other sibling also getting effected by depression. This statistic is also the average of the chances. If both the identical twins are raised together then the chances of both getting depressed raises to 76%. When the twins are raised separately then the chances of both the twins getting depressed comes down to 67%. In case of fraternal twins though the genetic nature is the same they may not look alike. When studies were made in cases like this the chances of both the twins falling sick is only 50%.

Genetics and depression

Genetics and depression are therefore associated closely. In case of any type of depression the family background is checked so that if there are any previous cases of depression in the family, it becomes easy for the physician to identify which kind of depression is being suffered by the patient. Studies are still being conducted to know what kind of genes carry this tendency of getting into depression. In case of bipolar disorder, out of all the cases of this disease 50% of the patients have parents who have already suffered bipolar depression. These statistics show the strong connection of genetics and depression.

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