The brain function that underlies anxiety and depression is inherited, a new study finds ? but there is still plenty of space for experience and environment to reduce the risk of a full-blown mental disorder.
The research focused on rhesus monkeys. Like humans, some young rhesus monkeys have what's called an "anxious temperament." Expose them to a mildly stressful situation, like being in a room with a stranger, and the monkeys will stop moving and stop vocalizing while their stress hormones skyrocket. Extremely shy children do the same, said Dr. Ned Kalin, a psychiatrist at the University of Wisconsin?Madison.
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