What's
New at
Labrix?
DPD
Simple, non-invasive urine test to track your patients' rate of bone loss. Pair this test with hormone and adrenal panels.
Learn more here.
DNA
FindWhyTM Weight Control Panel for Genetic Tendencies. DNA sample is collected from a non-invasive cheek swab.
Learn more here.
DHT
Acne, hair loss or hirutism a concern for your patients? Consider adding (DHT)
testing to their saliva test.
Coming soon!
October 16, 2014
Neuroendocrine Imbalances & Depression

Mild to moderate depression affects up to 10% of the U.S. population. Depression is the third most reported chronic health condition in the U.S.; most family practice providers, internists, and specialists will see some degree of mood disorders in their practices. Virtually all clinical reports on mood disorders identify neurotransmitter imbalances as contributors to either the root cause or the symptoms of depression and anxiety. Addressing neurotransmitter imbalances is a highly effective approach for successful clinical outcomes in terms of targeted treatment, cost and compliance.

Clinical symptoms of mood disorders can be grouped into three basic categories:

  • Emotional: Depressed mood, lack of motivation, disinterest in social activity, anxiety

  • Cognitive: Inability to concentrate, poor memory

  • Physical: Insomnia, headache, fatigue, and pain

Neurotransmitter imbalances are associated with all of these groups, and many individuals experience a combination of symptoms that may span all three categories!

Exploration of the underlying biochemistry of these symptoms often leads to the identification of imbalances in two key neurotransmitters — serotonin and norepinephrine. A disruption in the balance of either, or both, of these neurotransmitters represents a common neurochemical shift that results in mood changes.

Serotonin imbalances are associated with:

  • Poor impulse control
  • Low sex drive
  • Decreased appetite
  • Irritability

Norepinephrine imbalances are associated with:

  • Poor attention and memory
  • Decreased concentration
  • Reduced socialization
  • Altered states of arousal

Although serotonin and norepinephrine imbalances are often the primary culprits responsible for mood disturbances, dopamine, GABA, glutamate, estrogen, progesterone, cortisol and testosterone imbalances can all play significant causative or contributory roles in mood disorders. Addressing each of these neurotransmitters and hormones simultaneously is the most efficient route to wellness.

Dopamine is responsible for regulating the pleasure/reward pathway, memory and motor control. Many stimulants cause dopamine to be released into the neuronal synapse, which can lead to a reduction in demand for dopamine and contribute to depleted levels over time.

GABA also plays a significant role in maintaining mood because it is essential in balancing the excitatory effects of norepinephrine, epinephrine and dopamine. Neuroexcitatory overload can raise demand for GABA. Low GABA levels also contribute to mood disorders and may be associated with anxiety, worry and poor impulse control.

Glutamate is a major excitatory neurotransmitter in the CNS, and is involved in most aspects of brain function including cognition, memory and learning. Due to its excitatory role, high levels of glutamate are often associated with panic attacks, anxiety, and depression.

Sex hormones play a role in mood disorders as well. Estrogen increases serotonin receptor sensitivity, increases serotonin production and serves as a dopamine modulator. Progesterone is a GABA agonist and has a significant effect on the body’s HPA axis to manage stress and maintain a balanced mood. Fluctuations in both estrogen and progesterone, as seen in women of all ages, correlate to fluctuations in these mood-regulating neurotransmitters.

Testing both neurotransmitters and hormones provides a comprehensive and foundational view of the body’s functional neuro-endocrine status, and brings to light multiple factors that contribute to symptoms, allowing for defined, targeted treatments and improved clinical outcome.

References:

  • http://www.cdc.gov/Features/dsDepression
  • http://www.gallup.com/poll/145868/chronic-health-conditions-prevalent-2010-2009.aspx
  • Akiskal HS. Mood disorders: introduction and overview. In: Kaplan HI, Sadock BJ, eds. Comprehensive Textbook of Psychiatry. 6th ed. Baltimore, Md: Lippincott, Williams & Wilkins; 1995:1067-1079.
  • Grossman F, Potter WZ. Catecholamines in depression: a cumulative study of urinary norepinephrine and its major metabolites in unipolar and bipolar depressed patients versus healthy volunteers at the NIMH. Psychiatry Res. 1999 Jul 30;87(1):21-7.
  • Gonzales GF, Carillo C. Blood serotonin levels in postmenopausal women: effects of age and serum oestradiol levels. Maturitas. 1993;17:23-9.
  • Kaura V, et al. The progesterone metabolite allopregnanolone potentiates GABAa receptor-mediated inhibition of 5-ht neuronal activity. Eur Neuropsychopharm. 2007; 17: 108-15.

Labrix Advanced Workshop

Click here for a special invitation to Labrix Advanced Workshop from Labrix co-founder and CEO Dr. Erin Lommen.




Click here to register today!


Labrix Celebrates its 10th Anniversary!

Labrix co-founders Dr. Erin Lommen and Dr. Jay Mead sit down for a short interview and discuss the company's first ten years, as well as its bright future with diagnostic testing.




Labrix
Advanced Workshop
Las Vegas, NV
Jan 24-25, 2015

Registration is just $199 for Labrix Advanced Workshop (LAW). Register for LAW today.

AFMA
Atlanta, GA
Nov 6-9, 2014

Labrix' co-founders Dr. Erin Lommen and Dr. Jay Mead will be speaking at AFMA.

To receive $100 off your registration, use code EL2 or JM2 when registering for the conference.


A4M
Las Vegas, NV
Dec. 11-13, 2014

Labrix' co-founders Dr. Erin Lommen and Dr. Jay Mead will be speaking at A4M.

Dr. Erin Lommen will be speaking on Metabolic Syndrome and Menopause.

Dr. Jay Mead will be speaking on Testing Methodology Best Practices.