“Scientists have for the first time established a genetic cause for depression narrowing it down to a specific chromosome,” reported The Independent. It said that the study has found “clear evidence” that a region on chromosome 3 (called 3p25-26) is linked to severe recurrent depression.
This study looked at DNA from 971 sibling pairs who have European ancestry and who are affected by recurrent depression. Its findings are supported by another study published at the same time that found a link between the same region of chromosome 3 and depression in a sample of families of heavy smokers. This was reported to be the first time such a link had been independently confirmed in two studies.
One point worth noting is that these results may not apply to less severe, non-recurrent depression, or to individuals of non-European ancestry, who were not included in this study. Also, this finding does not mean that this is the only region containing genes that contribute to depression.