- Dr. Michael Maes
- Department of Psychiatry, Faculty of Medicine, King Chulalongkorn Memorial Hospital, Bangkok, Thailand.
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Special Issue Introduction
There is evidence that mood disorders, including a major depressive episode and bipolar disorder, are neuro-immune, neuro-oxidative, and neuro-nitrosative disorders. These mental diseases are characterized by peripheral signs of immune activation and nitro-oxidative stress, autoimmune responses to oxidatively-modified self-epitopes, and microglial activation including signs of neuroinflammation. Impairments in lipid metabolism and lowered levels in antioxidant defenses increase the vulnerability to developing activated immune and nitro-oxidative pathways. The theory is that a) some pro-inflammatory cytokines, hypernitrosylation, oxidative stress toxicity, and autoimmune responses to oxidative specific epitopes may exert neurotoxic effects (affective neurotoxicity) on neuronal functions leading to the phenome of mood disorders. The phenome comprises the symptomatome (including suicidal behaviors), phenotypes, and the phenomenome including lowered self-rated, health-related quality of life. Moreover, these pathways predict staging of illness (number of episodes and associated suicidal behaviors), which, therefore, partly mediate the effects of these pathways on the phenome of mood disorders.
There are many sources of immune activation and nitro-oxidative stress in both mood disorders, including genetic factors, early lifetime trauma, chronic stressors, leaky gut with increased bacterial translocation, leaky gum (apical periodontitis), nutritional status, infectious disease, and comorbidities with a) anxiety disorders (generalized anxiety disorder), post-traumatic stress disorder, and tobacco use disorder; b) neurodegenerative and neuroinflammatory disorders, including Parkinson’s disease, multiple sclerosis, stroke, and Alzheimer’s disease; and c) (auto)immune disorders, including lupus erythematosus, rheumatoid arthritis, inflammatory bowel disease, psoriasis, atherosclerosis, metabolic syndrome, and diabetes.
This special issue focuses on the role of neuro-affective toxicity in mood disorders and will publish data on neuroimmune, neuro-oxidative, and neuro-nitrosative pathways in mood disorders, and their comorbidities with other illnesses. We will publish clinical, pan-omics, translational and preclinical data, which examine cell-line and animal models. We are interested in publishing new data-driven models of these mood disorders using machine learning techniques, i.e., the nomothetic network approach.
Submission Deadline30 Jun 2021