Frontiers in Drug Discovery

Frontiers in Drug Discovery

Volume: 2

The Search for Antidepressants - An Integrative View of Drug Discovery

Major depressive disorder (MDD) is a prevalent, chronic, and recurring mental disorder. This disorder is a leading source of disability worldwide, and is associated with excess mortality rates. ...
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Animal Models of Depression: Current Status and Perspectives

Pp. 41-76 (36)

DOI: 10.2174/9781681084732117020005

Author(s): Morgana Moretti, Manuela P. Kaster, Ana Lúcia S. Rodrigues


Considering the high prevalence of depressive disorders, its social burden and the limitations of currently available antidepressant treatments, animal models of depression aiming at better understanding the neurobiology of this psychiatric disorder and the development of target therapies are essential tools. Although these models fail to mimic all the aspects of this complex psychiatric disorder they have significantly contributed to the development of the field in psychiatry. In this chapter, we summarize the main models of depression that are currently used to assess depression-like phenotypes in rodents. Existing models of depression include stress-based, pharmacological and genetic models, which are evaluated in this chapter in relation to their construct, face and predictive validity as well as their contribution to our understanding of neurobiological mechanisms involved in depression and antidepressant responses.


animal models, antidepressants, behavior, construct validity, depression, face validity, genes, inflammation, predictive validity, rodents, stress.