New Research Study: Pregnenolone Neurosteroid for the Treatment of Menopausal Depression

Over the last few years we have heard a great deal about neurosteroids, also known as neuroactive steroids.  This class of compounds are steroid hormones produced in the brain and endocrine tissues which can modulate neurotransmission.  Animal studies have demonstrated that neurosteroids have a broad range of activities, including antidepressant, anxiolytic, sedative, analgesic, anticonvulsant, neuroprotective, and neuroproliferative effects.   While we have known about neuroactive effects of steroids since the 1940s, [...]

February 12th, 2021|

Dr. Lee Cohen Discusses Menopause on the It’s Not a Crisis Podcast

In this episode of It’s Not a Crisis, Dr. Lee Cohen speaks with host Doryn Wallach about the struggles many women experience during the menopausal transition. For most women, menopausal symptoms are manageable, but for a sizable subset of midlife women, these symptoms can negatively affect sleep, mood, and quality of life.  While clinical guidelines suggest that menopausal symptoms typically last from 6 months to 2 years, new research suggests that [...]

February 11th, 2021|

Essential Reads: Emerging Evidence of the Long-Term Effects of Cannabis on the Developing Brain

Despite decreasing rates of alcohol and tobacco use during pregnancy, the use of cannabis use during pregnancy is on the rise.  We are seeing an increasing number of women in our clinic who are using marijuana on a regular basis — recreationally and medically prescribed.  This is no surprise given that many states have or are now moving forward with the legalization of medical marijuana. The majority of marijuana users are [...]

February 10th, 2021|

Prenatal Exposure to Valproic Acid Linked to Increased Risk for Autism, ADHD

Prenatal exposure to valproate has been associated with an elevated risk (10%) for a broad range of congenital malformations including neural tube defects, as well as adverse neurodevelopmental sequelae, including lower IQ and developmental delays in offspring. Several studies have shown that exposure to valproic acid (Depakote) may be associated with increased risk of autism spectrum disorders or autistic traits and/or attentional problems. A new study examines the association between prenatal [...]

February 9th, 2021|

Weekly Roundup for FEBRUARY 5, 2021: Recent Publications in Women’s Mental Health

Every week we review the most recent publications in women’s mental health, covering topics related to premenstrual symptoms, perinatal mood and anxiety disorders, use of medications in pregnant and breastfeeding women, perinatal substance use, and menopausal mental health.  For more detailed descriptions of many of these topics, you can sign up to receive our weekly CWMH NEWSLETTER which comes out every Thursday.   Ruta Nonacs, MD PhD PMS AND PMDD [...]

February 6th, 2021|

Recruiting New Mothers with Postpartum Depression for the Skylark Study

In 2019,  brexanolone was introduced by Sage Therapeutics as Zulresso, a novel treatment for postpartum depression.  The oral version of this novel antidepressant – SAGE 217 or zuranolone – is now finishing up its Phase 3 trials. Like brexanolone, SAGE-217 is a neurosteroid, an analogue of allopregnanolone which is a positive allosteric modulator of the GABA-A receptor. What distinguishes SAGE-217 from brexanolone is that it has much better oral bioavailability and [...]

February 5th, 2021|
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