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Cytokines, Treatment Responses, and Body Weight Changes in Major Depressive Patients Treated with Antidepressants

Chin-Chuen Lin, Chien-Te Lee, Tiao-Lai Huang

Objectives:Serum cytokine levels are implicated in the action of mechanism for acute-phase major depression. In this study, we intended to investigate the re-lationships between cytokine serum levels and treatment responses as well as body weight changes after a four-week antidepressant treatment in patients with major depressive disorders. Methods: Fifty-four major depressive patients were recruit-ed. Their serum cytokine levels of interferon-γ (IFN-γ), tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α), interleukin-10 (IL-10), and transforming growth factor β1 (TGF-β1) were examined using ELISA kits. Psychiatric diagnoses were made using the DSM-IV criteria. Severity of major depression was assessed using the 17-item Hamilton Depression Rating Scale. Results: We found significantly lower base-line serum IL-10 level (p = 0.001) and significantly lower baseline IL-10/TGF-β1 ratio (p < 0.01) in responders compared to those in non-responders. In all patients after antidepressant treatment, we found a significant positive correlation between body weight change and TNF-α/TGF-β1 ratio change (p < 0.05). In responders alone, a significant positive correlation between body weight change and TNF-α/ TGF-β1 ratio change (p < 0.05) was found. In non-responders, a significant nega-tive correlation between body weight change and IL-10/TGF-β1 ratio change (p < 0.01) was found. Conclusion: Serum levels of TNF-α, IL-10 and TGF-β1 could be used to predict the treatment response and body weight change in patients with major depression.
Key Word antidepressant, body weight, cytokine, major depression
Editorial Committe, Taiwanese Journal of Psychiatry
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