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Researchers link depression to genetic causes

It has long been a mystery why some families are more likely to have some of their members struggle with mental illness than other families. Science might be one step closer to a fuller understanding of mental health issues after discovering that nearly 80 genes are linked to depression.

The findings could help explain why some people are higher risk of depression, as well as help researchers develop drugs to combat the condition. According to the Social Security Administration, depression is the second most common condition listed on SSDI claims.

According to a recent news article, depression is the leading cause of disability globally.

University of Edinburgh researchers analyzed the genetic codes of 300,000 people in a UK database to identify DNA that could be linked to depression. Some of the identified genes are part of synapse functionality. Synapses are the connectors that enable brain cellls to communicate via chemical and electrical signals.

The professor who leads the research group said, "Depression is a common and often severe condition that affects millions of people worldwide.” He added that he hopes the new findings will help science make significant advances on mental illness in the near future.

While there’s reason for optimism, people who are disabled by depression need help today. If you have applied for Social Security Disability Insurance benefits and been denied, you can appeal the decision with the help of an attorney who understands the process and how to document and present evidence to an administrative law judge.

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