Review Volume 13, Issue 23 pp 25588—25601
Influence of early life stress on depression: from the perspective of neuroendocrine to the participation of gut microbiota
- 1 Department of Anesthesiology, Tongji Hospital, Tongji Medical College, Huazhong University of Science and Technology, Wuhan, Hubei, China
Received: August 25, 2021 Accepted: November 24, 2021 Published: December 10, 2021https://doi.org/10.18632/aging.203746
How to Cite
Copyright: © 2021 Tan et al. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 3.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.
Depression is the most common mental disorder and has become a heavy burden in modern society. Clinical studies have identified early life stress as one of the high-risk factors for increased susceptibility to depression. Alteration of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis in response to stress is one of the key risk factors for depression susceptibility related to early life stress. Laboratory animal studies have demonstrated that maternal separation (MS) for extended periods elicits HPA axis changes. These changes persist into adulthood and resemble those present in depressed adult individuals, including hyperactivity of the HPA axis. In addition, there is growing evidence that inflammation plays an important role in depression susceptibility concerned with early life stress. Individuals that have experienced MS have higher levels of pro-inflammatory cytokines and are susceptible to depression. Recently, it has been found that the gut microbiota plays an important role in regulating behavior and is also associated with depression. The translocation of gut microbiota and the change of gut microbiota composition caused by early stress may be a reason. In this review, we discussed the mechanisms by which early life stress contributes to the development of depression in terms of these factors. These studies have facilitated a systematic understanding of the pathogenesis of depression related to early life stress and will provide new ideas for the prevention and treatment of depression.