The Comorbidity of Depression and Cardiovascular Disease in Midlife Women: Investigating novel biological pathways of risk
2021 Award: $39,617
The risk for developing depression and cardiovascular disease increases significantly in midlife women and this combination of illnesses is a leading cause of disability in this population. Disruption in the physiological pathways involved in stress response may underlie the connection between these illnesses, though this has not been fully studied. The primary objective of this proposal is to examine whether dysfunction in the renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system and autonomic nervous system pathways may be a mechanistic link underlying the association between depression and cardiovascular disease in women.
Need/Problem: Depression and cardiovascular disease (CVD) contribute significantly to the morbidity and mortality of women. About 20% of women are impacted by this comorbidity, which is also the leading cause of disability in women worldwide. The menopausal transition or perimenopause is a period of vulnerability for both depression and CVD, making it a key time to study this critical public health issue.
Grant Summary: We will explore whether disruption in two novel stress pathways 1) the renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system (RAAS) and autonomic nervous system (ANS) and their relationship may underlie the link between depression during the perimenopause (D-MT) and CVD in midlife women.
Goals and Projected Outcomes: This study will provide important insight into potential mechanisms by which D-MT and CVD may be linked in midlife women, which will inform potential risk reduction and treatment strategies that can improve health outcomes in this population.