Affective Disorders


The affective disorders (e.g. depression and bipolar disorder) are a group of common psychiatric disorders in which pathological disturbance of mood is the primary symptom. Although the neuropathology of affective disorders is unclear, they can be treated successfully with antidepressant and mood‐stabilizing drugs.

Keywords: depression; bipolar disorder; antidepressant; mood stabilizer

Further Reading

American Psychiatric Association (1994) Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, 4th edn. Washington, DC: American Psychiatric Association.

Bennett P, Segurado R, Jones I, et al. (2002) The Wellcome trust UK–Irish bipolar affective disorder sibling‐pair genome screen: first stage report. Molecular Psychiatry 7: 189–200.

Blier P (2001) Pharmacology of rapid‐onset antidepressant treatment strategies. Journal of Clinical Psychiatry 62(supplement 15): 12–17.

Blier P and Abbott FV (2001) Putative mechanisms of action of antidepressant drugs in affective and anxiety disorders and pain. Journal of Psychiatry and Neuroscience 26: 37–43.

Brown ES, Rush AJ and McEwen BS (1999) Hippocampal remodeling and damage by corticosteroids: implications for mood disorders. Neuropsychopharmacology 21: 474–484.

Cowen PJ (2000) Psychopharmacology of 5‐HT1A receptors. Nuclear Medicine and Biology 27: 437–439.

Drevets WC (2001) Neuroimaging and neuropathological studies of depression: implications for the cognitive–emotional features of mood disorders. Current Opinions in Neurobiology 11: 240–249.

Drevets WC, Frank E, Price JC, et al. (2000) Serotonin type‐1A receptor imaging in depression. Nuclear Medicine and Biology 27: 499–507.

Heim C and Nemeroff CB (2001) The role of childhood trauma in the neurobiology of mood and anxiety disorders: preclinical and clinical studies. Biological Psychiatry 49: 1023–1039.

McQuade R and Young AH (2000) Future therapeutic targets in mood disorders: the glucocorticoid receptor. British Journal of Psychiatry 177: 390–395.

Paykel ES (2001) Stress and affective disorders in humans. Seminars in Clinical Neuropsychiatry 6: 4–11.

Rush AJ, Giles DE, Schlesser MA, et al. (1996) The dexamethasone suppression test in patients with mood disorders. Journal of Clinical Psychiatry 57: 470–484.

Sargent PA, Kjaer KH, Bench CJ, et al. (2000) Brain serotonin1A receptor binding measured by positron emission tomography with [11C]WAY‐100635: effects of depression and antidepressant treatment. Archives of General Psychiatry 57: l74–180.

Shaldubina A, Agam G and Belmaker RH (2001) The mechanism of lithium action: state of the art, ten years later. Progress in Neuropsychopharmacology and Biological Psychiatry 25: 855–866.

Souery D, Rivelli SK and Mendlewicz J (2001) Molecular genetic and family studies in affective disorders: state of the art. Journal of Affective Disorders 62: 45–55.

Vaidya VA and Duman RS (2001) Depression – emerging insights from neurobiology. British Medical Bulletin 57: 61–79.

Wong ML, Kling MA, Munson PJ, et al. (2000) Pronounced and sustained central hypernoradrenergic function in major depression with melancholic features: relation to hypercortisolism and corticotropin‐releasing hormone. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the USA 97: 325–330.

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How to Cite close
Gartside, Sarah(Jul 2003) Affective Disorders. In: eLS. John Wiley & Sons Ltd, Chichester. [doi: 10.1038/npg.els.0002202]