Psychiatry Investig Search


Psychiatry Investigation 2006;3(2):23-35.
Neurobiological Factors Associated with Suicidal Behavior
Bun-Hee Lee, MD, PhD; and Yong-Ku Kim, MD, PhD
Department of Psychiatry and Division of Brain Korea 21 Biomedical Science, College of Medicine Korea University, Korea
<p class="MsoPlainText" style="word-spacing: 1; line-height: 150%; margin-top: 0; margin-bottom: 0" align="left"><font face="HY중고딕" size="2">Suicide is a major public health issue and a significant cause of death worldwide. Many animal, post-mortem, clinical, and genetic studies have produced results implicating at least 3 neurobiological systems in the pathogenesis of suicidal behavior: a deficiency in the serotonergic system, hyperactivity of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis, and excess of norepinephrine release followed by norepinephrine deficiency. In addition, several studies have pointed to the involvement of the dopaminergic system, neurotrophic factors, cholesterol, and cytokines in the pathogenesis of suicidal behavior. However, more research will be required in order to confirm these associations. In the future, a greater understanding of suicidal behavior and its neurobiology may facilitate the detection of at-risk individuals, and contribute to the development of more effective interventions.

Key words   Suicide;Neurobiology;Serotonin;Hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal;Norepinephrine.


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