New antidepressants and mice

Depression is a debilitating disease that affects about 264 million people, worldwide. However, one third of patients with depression do not respond to current antidepressants.

Scientists are researching new antidepressants that work for everyone, work quickly, have fewer side effects, and are safe in overdose. Animal research is essential for developing new medicines and the forced swim test (or Porsolt swim test) is an effective test for screening antidepressant activity in mice and rats.

When given an antidepressant, rats and mice swim for longer, before floating, than those animals not given an antidepressant.

Read more about developing new drugs to fight depression here:

Thank you to the following people for speaking to us about their research: Clare Stanford, Professor of Translational Neuropharmacology at UCL Professor Allan Young, Vice Dean (Academic Psychiatry) at King’s College London Dr Sarah Bailey, Senior Lecturer of Pharmacy and Pharmacology at the University of Bath John Kelly, Professor in Pharmacology and Therapeutics at NUI, Galway David Slattery, Professor of Translational Psychiatry, Goethe University Frankfurt.

If you or someone you know suffers from depression and needs support, please contact the Samaritans on 116 123 (freephone 24/7),

Last edited: 1 April 2022 14:19

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