Major depressive disorder (MDD) is a leading cause of disability, and there is an urgent need for new therapeutics. Stress-mediated induction of pro-inflammation in the periphery contributes to depression-like behaviors both in humans and in experimental models. Inflammatory cytokine interleukin-6 (IL-6) has emerged as a potential therapeutic target. Our studies demonstrated that metabolism of flavanol rich cocoa preparation (FRP) led to the accumulation of select phenolic acids that may contribute to its anti-inflammatory activity. Using a repeated social defeat stress (RSDS) model of depression, we showed that oral administration of FRP attenuates susceptibility to RSDS-mediated depression, supporting the further development of FRP as a novel therapeutic for the treatment of stress disorders and anxiety in humans.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Psychiatry and Mental health
- Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience
- Biological Psychiatry