The Inflamed Mind: A Radical New Approach to Depression

Edward Bullmore. Picador, $28 (256p) ISBN 978-1-250-31814-5
Psychiatry professor Bullmore’s debut implores depression sufferers to embrace the new field of neuroimmunology and the idea that mood and the immune response could be directly linked. He laments that doctors often treat the unhappy mental states of patients with inflammatory conditions as reasonable psychological responses to the stress of illness rather than as distinct and treatable health problems. He also blames this attitude for a lack of progress in treatment for depression in recent decades. Bullmore’s targeted, readable primer on the immune system focuses on the cytokines systemically produced as part of the inflammatory response. These are proteins that, Bullmore believes, based on current research showing the blood-brain barrier as more permeable than previously thought, could be interacting with cells in the brain and interfering with serotonin signaling. He may raise some eyebrows when he positions himself as an underappreciated maverick struggling against an oblivious medical establishment. However, he stops short of recommending anything other than further research, admitting that his ideas are still unproven, while leaving general readers with a well-informed and cogently argued brief for funding and more investigation in the field. (Dec.)
Reviewed on: 08/27/2018
Release date: 09/18/2018
Genre: Nonfiction
Pre-Recorded Audio Player - 978-1-250-22381-4
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