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Serum/glucocorticoid regulated kinase 1 (SGK1)

Patient, rodent and cell culture studies suggest inhibiting SGK1 could help treat stress-induced depression. In a human hippocampal progenitor cell line, a small molecule inhibitor of SGK1 blocked cortisol-induced decreases in neurogenesis, whereas vehicle did not. In peripheral blood samples from patients with major depression, SGK1 mRNA levels were higher than those in healthy controls. In two rat models of stress-induced depression, hippocampal expression of Sgk1 was greater than that in nonstressed controls. Next steps include determining whether inhibition of SGK1 can block the effects of stress and stress hormones on brain function and depression-like behaviors in animal models.

SciBX 6(21); doi:10.1038/scibx.2013.524
Published online May 30, 2013

Unpatented; licensing status not applicable

Anacker, C. et al. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA; published online May 6, 2013;
Contact: Christoph Anacker, King's College London, London, U.K.