Etiology and Treatment of Major Depressive Disorder: Where Research Stands and Suggestions for the Future
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Undergraduate honors thesis / Opt-Out
A deeper understanding of Major Depressive Disorder (MDD) is crucial to identify and monitor those at risk for depression and more easily diagnose and effectively treat patients. This paper provides an in-depth look at the etiology of MDD, covering the biological and, briefly, the psychological theories of depression. Also included are environmental risk factors, genetic links to the disorder, biomarker measurements, and an overview of psychotherapy and pharmacological treatment options. Throughout, there is discussion of current obstacles in research and suggestions for future projects. Studies often focus on one or two aspects of depression or depression treatment, but combining the information allows for a much more complete understanding of the disease and for connections between topics to emerge. The author demonstrates how the hypotheses of the pathophysiology of depression complement one another, and explains why future research must focus on finding trends and subgroups within MDD, understanding the effect psychosocial risk factors and biomarker levels have on one another, and optimizing the synergistic relationship of psychotherapy and pharmacological treatment.
Landau, A. (2022, January). Etiology and Treatment of Major Depressive Disorder: Where Research Stands and Suggestions for the Future, (Undergraduate honors thesis, Yeshiva University).