Cytokine Production and Treatment
Response in Major Depressive Disorder

Lanquillon S, Krieg J, Bening-Abu-Shach U, Vedder H
Department of Psychiatry and Psychotherapy,
Philipps-University of Marburg,
Marburg, Germany
Neuropsychopharmacology 2000 Apr 1; 22(4):370-379


In a controlled study, such immunological parameters as whole blood production of the cytokines interleukin-6 (IL-6) and tumor-necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-alpha) were assessed in 24 inpatients with a major depressive disorder (MDD) both before and again under treatment. After a 6-week treatment period with amitriptyline, patients were classified as responders or nonresponders according to their psychopathological outcome as evaluated by the Hamilton and the Montgomery-Asberg Depression Rating Scales. Pre-treatment levels of c-reactive protein (CRP) were significantly higher in both patient subgroups than in the control subjects. In comparison to the controls, unstimulated pretreatment production of IL-6 was significantly decreased in the responders; whereas it was significantly increased in the nonresponder subgroup. Post-treatment values did not differ significantly among the patient and control groups. Pretreatment levels of TNF-alpha were increased in both patient subgroups, with a significant decrease during treatment only in the responder subgroup. Pretreatment levels of IL-6/10(5) mononuclear cells and the ratio between lymphocytes and monocytes acted as independent variables with regard to the clinical response. Our data indicate that unstimulated secretion of TNF-alpha is related to the psychopathological improvement; whereas, IL-6 levels might dichotomize the patients into subsequent responders and nonresponders already at admission.
21st Century
Cytokines and psychiatry
Inflammation and depression
Lipids, depression and suicide
Cytokines and major depression
Cytokines, stress and depression
Cytokines, depression and antidepressants
An overactive immune system and depression
Cytokines and heart failure-induced anhedonia
Antidepressants, cytokines and mood disorders

and further reading

Future Opioids
BLTC Research
Utopian Surgery?
The Abolitionist Project
The Hedonistic Imperative
The Reproductive Revolution
Critique of Huxley's Brave New World

The Good Drug Guide
The Good Drug Guide

The Responsible Parent's Guide
To Healthy Mood Boosters For All The Family