Depression afflicts over 27 million adults in the US and is associated with impaired white matter integrity in the brain that ultimately disrupts the communication of neurons and is linked to poor response to antidepressants, functional decline and cognitive impairment, especially in older individuals. Depression is also associated with increased inflammation which worsens with age and may contribute to white matter pathology through increasing brain glutamate, a neurotransmitter that in excess is toxic to both white matter cells and neurons. The goal of the proposed research is to test the hypothesis that inflammation increases brain glutamate in middle-aged depressed patients which in turn is associated with increased white matter pathology and alterations in behavior and cognition. Click here to learn more.