Effect of acute tryptophan depletion on emotions in individuals with personal and family history of depression following a mood induction

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5 Scopus citations

Abstract

Background: Acute tryptophan depletion (ATD) has shown depletion-specific increases in depressed mood and overall depressive symptoms, especially in those with a family history and in remitted patients. However, its effect on a broad range of emotions beyond depressed mood has been inconsistent, and studies have rarely employed a negative mood induction. Method: The present double-blind study administered tryptophan-depleted and taste-matched placebo challenge drinks to individuals with a past diagnosis and family history of depression (i.e. depression-vulnerable subjects) and controls in order to investigate the effect of ATD on positive affect, anxiety, anger and depressed mood following a negative mood induction. Results: Certain aspects of positive affect decreased due to ATD in the depression vulnerables but not in the controls. No differential effects were found on depressed mood and anxiety. Conclusions: A stress-induced blunted hedonic capacity may increase vulnerability to ATD and may be a core emotional abnormality in depression. Additionally, serotonin may have a stronger influence on positive affect than on other depression-related emotions during periods of stress.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)171-176
Number of pages6
JournalNeuropsychobiology
Volume62
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Aug 1 2010

Keywords

  • Depression
  • Emotions
  • Mood induction
  • Tryptophan depletion

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuropsychology and Physiological Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Biological Psychiatry

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