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Dr. Charles Raison on Depression, the Immune-Brain Interface & Whole-Body Hyperthermia

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Charles Raison, M.D. is a professor at the School of Human Ecology at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and Founding Director of the Center for Compassion Studies in the College of Social and Behavioral Sciences at the University of Arizona. Dr. Raison’s research focuses on inflammation and the development of depression in response to illness and stress. He also examines the physical and behavioral effects of compassion training on the brain, inflammatory processes, and behavior as well as the effect of heat stress as a potentially therapeutic intervention major depressive disorder. In this nearly 2-hour episode, we discuss the extremely dynamic interaction that the immune system has with mood, behavior, and the brain, as well as the potential that whole-body hyperthermia, a research technique mostly indistinguishable from sauna use, may have for the treatment of clinical depression. Additionally, we also talk about…. How depression as a disease may be subdivided based on whether or not there is involvement of chronic inflammation and how this could influence how it should be treated. The changes in functional brain connectivity that are associated with the high inflammation subtype of depression. The physiological similarities a sauna, hot bath, steam shower, and hot yoga have with whole-body hyperthermia from the standpoint of potentially therapeutically boosting body temperature. Preliminary evidence that increased expression of a certain heat shock protein in the brain may influence behavior by protecting against stress-induced depression. … and so much more. Go to the timeline on the episode page to see a full breakdown. Click here to visit the episode page and show notes now. Did you enjoy this podcast? It was brought to you by people like you! Click here to visit our crowdsponsor page where you can learn more about how you can support the podcast for as little or as much as you like.

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