"We expect that the biological basis of this test may provide patients with insight into their depression as a treatable disease rather than a source of self-doubt and stigma," John Bilello, chief scientific officer of Ridge Diagnostics, which makes the blood test and sponsored the study, said in a statement.
Brain and the blood
Redei also said that a blood test could also help remove some of the stigma attached to depression.
"Only about 25 percent of depressed teens are being treated," she said. "It has to do with the fact that they have to go through this process to be diagnosed, and then there is a stigma attached to it."
Because a blood test provides physical evidence of a disease, it could help counter misconceptions about depression, such as that it is all in a person's head, or is a sign of some personal weakness, the reasoning goes.
"It will help remove that stigma, if we have something you can attach a number to," Redei said."Eventually the whole society will accept that this disease, depression, isn't something you can just get over by pulling yourself up."
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