Florence, November 13 - Researchers from the University of Florence have found that anti-depressant drugs may also have a positive effect in combating neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer's and Parkinson's. In a study published in Biological Psychiatry by a team led by Maura Boldrini, the researchers lay out evidence which shows that on subjects who suffer from forms of depression, using anti-depressant drugs also stimulates the growth of nervous-system stem cells as well as blood vessels. "This discovery strengthens convictions in the scientific world of the potential of treatments based on the regenerative capacities of stem cells," Boldrini said in the study. "It's a known fact that anti-depressants have a potential which goes beyond merely regulating people's moods". The researcher said that her group would now propose a new project to study on what receptors anti-depressant drugs act in order to produce the desired growth effects. A few days after having been published in Biological Psychiatry, Boldrini's research was also published in the journal Science.