Nature Reviews Neuroscience 6, 241-246 (March 2005) | doi:10.1038/nrn1629

OpinionIs mood chemistry?

Eero Castrén1  About the author


The chemical hypothesis of depression suggests that mood disorders are caused by a chemical imbalance in the brain, which can be corrected by antidepressant drugs. However, recent evidence indicates that problems in information processing within neural networks, rather than changes in chemical balance, might underlie depression, and that antidepressant drugs induce plastic changes in neuronal connectivity, which gradually lead to improvements in neuronal information processing and recovery of mood.

Author affiliations

  1. Eero Castrén is at the Neuroscience Center, University of Helsinki, Finland.


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