Two related stories from Science Daily, the first from May of this year:
A study by researchers at Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health suggests that traumatic experiences “biologically embed” themselves in select genes, altering their functions and leading to the development of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
“Our findings suggest a new biological model of PTSD in which alteration of genes, induced by a traumatic event, changes a person’s stress response and leads to the disorder,” said Sandro Galea, MD, professor and chair of the Department of Epidemiology at the Mailman School of Public Health, and principal investigator.
“Identification of the biologic underpinnings of PTSD will be crucial for developing appropriate psychological and/or pharmacological interventions, particularly in the wake of an increasing number of military veterans returning home following recent wars worldwide.”
The findings are published online in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS).