Improbable Research: Psychotherapy for rats

Genes are not destiny in determining whether a person will suffer from depression, reports a new Northwestern Medicine study. Environment is a major factor, and nurture can override nature.

When rats genetically bred for depression received the equivalent of rat “psychotherapy,” their depressed behavior was alleviated. And, after the depressed rats had the therapy, some of their blood biomarkers for depression changed to non-depressed levels.

The environment can modify a genetic predisposition to depression,” said lead study investigator Eva Redei, a professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine…

BONUS QUESTION: If you are a psychiatrist who successfully — and on a regular basis — supplies psychotherapy to rats, we would like to hear details of your methods and of your billing rates.

Um, OK.