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Talk on How Childhood Stress Can Cause Depression and How We Can Prevent It

Exposure to childhood stress is one of the biggest risk factors for depression that onsets in adolescence or adulthood. But how do we identify which individuals might be more susceptible to developing depression following exposure to stress? And are there sensitive periods, or stages during a lifespan when stress is particularly harmful in increasing the risk for depression?

Tue, December 19, 2017
7:00 PM – 8:00 PM EST

Boston Public Library
700 Boylston Street
Johnson Building, Central Library
Boston, MA 02116

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In this talk, Dr. Erin Dunn will share examples of how her research lab is studying the role of genetic variation in shaping risk for depression, the potential ways in which stress changes our biology to make us more at risk of developing depression, and the time periods in development when stress may be more likely to “get under our skin” to increase the risk of depression.

Seating is first-come, first-serve in WGBH’s Boston Public Library Studio. Overflow seating will be located in the Newsfeed Café and is not guaranteed.

Speaker bio:
Dr. Dunn is a social and psychiatric epidemiologist with expertise in genetics. Her research laboratory ( uses interdisciplinary approaches to better understand the social and genetic factors that influence the etiology of mood disorders, with an emphasis on depression among women, children, and adolescents. The goal of her work is to identify the causal mechanisms underlying risk for mood disorders, develop population-based strategies for prevention, and target these strategies to “sensitive periods,” or developmental stages in the course of the lifespan when the brain is highly “plastic” and therefore when experience, including exposure to childhood adversity, can have lasting impacts.

Directions to WGBH’s Boston Public Library Studio, 700 Boylston Street
Public Transit: Green line to Copley, head west on Boylston St. toward Exeter St. Destination will be on the left. WGBH’s Boston Public Library Studio is located inside the Newsfeed Café in the Central Library’s newly renovated Johnson building.

Parking: Valet parking is available across the street at The Lenox Hotel (61 Exeter St.) accessible by Exeter St. Metered street parking is limited, but available in the area. Parking garages are also located further down Exeter St.

The Newsfeed Café is operated and managed by The Catered Affair and offers a selection of Chef-Inspired Grab & Go fare featuring gourmet salads, pastries, and family friendly snacks. You can find Newsfeed Café’s menu here.


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