March 27, 2014


First stem cell study of bipolar disorder yields promising results

What makes a person bipolar, prone to manic highs and deep, depressed lows? Why does bipolar disorder run so strongly in families, even though no single gene is to blame? And why is it so hard to find new treatments for a condition that affects 200 million people worldwide?

New stem cell research published by scientists from the U-M Medical School and fueled by the Heinz C. Prechter Bipolar Research Fund and the Steven M. Schwartzberg Memorial Fund may help scientists find answers to these questions.

The team used skin from people with bipolar disorder to derive the first-ever stem cell lines specific to the condition. In a new paper  in Translational Psychiatrythey report how they transformed the stem cells into neurons, similar to those found in the brain – and compared them to cells derived from people without bipolar disorder. Read more...

Rhythm and blues

Not everyone living with clinical depression experiences their worst symptoms in the morning, but it’s a pattern that many report. For those without depression, the opposite is more often true– their regular daily rhythms lead them to have the greatest energy and “zip” after waking up in the morning. In the Winter 2014 issue of esperanza Magazine – “hope” to cope with anxiety and depression, Depression Center Executive Director John Greden, M.D. discusses diurnal varation in normal chronobiological rhythms, or this flip in daily rhythm in those with mood disorders. Read more...

Annual flower sale

The Community Volunteer Committee will be holding their Annual Flower Sale on Monday, April 14, from 7:30am-7pm in the Lobby of the Rachel Upjohn Building. Don’t miss out on this wonderful opportunity to buy gorgeous flowers and benefit the U-M Depression Center Programs.

Prices for the flower sale:

  • Lilies $10
  • Ranunculus (many colors) $10
  • Pansy pots (multi-colored) $10
  • Cyclamen (pink and red) $12
  • Hydrangeas (blue, pink and white) $15

To place pre-orders, please send an email to:, or call Tricia at 734-369-2312.

"Transforming Loss" to air on Detroit Public Television

The powerful documentary “Transforming Loss,” produced by Judith Burdick and providing first-person accounts of six Michigan families and their remarkable stories of profound loss, will be shown on Detroit Public Television (DPTV) this Sunday, March 30 at 4pm. At that time, it will be streamed online and also available On Demand through DPTV for a designated amount of time.

Help us help you: participate in research

We need research to understand how depression and related illnesses develop and progress, how and why depression can affect different people in different ways, how to help people feel better, and how to keep symptoms from returning. Without the involvement of individual participants, however, research and medicine would not advance – we need people to make progress. Participating in research is one of the most powerful ways to make a difference in improving mental health care, and there are many ways to get involved. Learn more...



Ongoing: NAMI Washtenaw County offers support groups for people of all ages with mental illness and their loved ones. These free groups are held regularly each month in Ann Arbor; visit their website for details.

April 2: Family Education Workshop

April 4: Autism Spectrum Disorder and College: How to Promote Success in Higher Education

April 9: Depression & Bipolar Support Groups

April 14: Depression Center Community Volunteer Committee Flower Sale 
7:30am-7pm, Rachel Upjohn Building Lobby

April 23: Depression & Bipolar Support Groups

April 23: Parent Education Seminar
Solutions for Common Feeding Issues in Children with Autism Spectrum Disorders

May 7: Family Education Workshop

May 8: Kadima Healthy Body/Healthy Mind Fundraiser
Keynote speaker: Patty Duke, Academy Award-winning actress, past president of the Screen Actors Guild and best-selling author.

May 14: Depression & Bipolar Support Groups

May 28: Depression & Bipolar Support Groups

May 28: Parent Education Seminar
The Use of Psychiatric Medications in Children with ASD


April 4: 2014 Conference on Adolescent Health

April 25: Depression Center Colloquium
Electroconvulsive Therapy for Adolescents and Adults: An Update

We welcome suggestions about the content and format of this publication – please email with your feedback.




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