My colleague at the University of Calgary, Dr. Jian Li Wang, is the lead investigator on a large prospective cohort study (a study that follows a large group of respondents forward in time). The main goal of this study is to evaluate the workplace and their role in mental health. However, his study happened to be ongoing at the time when the current economic crisis hit. In his cohort, the prevalence of major depression increased from 5.1% to 7.6%, a significant change. The prevalence of dysthymic disorder (chronic, low grade depression) also increased significantly. This is one of the first studies to demonstrate the sensitivity of this condition to environmental conditions, in this case socio-economic conditions.
A link to the abstract for the paper may be found
Full text of the paper here.