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Neurological Sciences

, Volume 36, Issue 5, pp 729–734 | Cite as

BDNF plasma levels variations in major depressed patients receiving duloxetine

  • Michele Fornaro
  • Andrea Escelsior
  • Giulio Rocchi
  • Benedetta Conio
  • Paola Magioncalda
  • Valentina Marozzi
  • Andrea Presta
  • Bruno Sterlini
  • Paola Contini
  • Mario Amore
  • Pantaleo Fornaro
  • Matteo Martino
Original Article

Abstract

It has been frequently reported that brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) plays an important role in the pathophysiology of major depressive disorder (MDD). Objective of the study was to investigate BDNF levels variations in MDD patients during antidepressant treatment with duloxetine. 30 MDD patients and 32 healthy controls were assessed using Hamilton Depression Scale (HAM-D) and monitored for BDNF plasma levels at baseline, week 6 and week 12 of duloxetine treatment (60 mg/day) and at baseline, respectively. According to early clinical response to duloxetine (defined at week 6 by reduction >50 % of baseline HAM-D score), MDD patients were distinguished in early responders (ER) and early non-responders (ENR), who reached clinical response at week 12. Laboratory analysis showed significant lower baseline BDNF levels among patients compared to controls. During duloxetine treatment, in ENR BDNF levels increased, reaching values not significantly different compared to controls, while in ER BDNF levels remained nearly unchanged. Lower baseline BDNF levels observed in patients possibly confirm an impairment of the NEI stress-adaptation system and neuroplasticity in depression, while BDNF increase and normalization observed only in ENR might suggest differential neurobiological backgrounds in ER vs. ENR within the depressive syndrome.

Keywords

BDNF Depression Duloxetine Neuroplasticity Neuroendocrine immunity 

Notes

Acknowledgments

Authors have no acknowledgement to state. The authors received any financial support for this paper.

Conflict of interests

Authors have no conflict of interest to declare.

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Italia 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Michele Fornaro
    • 1
    • 2
  • Andrea Escelsior
    • 1
  • Giulio Rocchi
    • 1
  • Benedetta Conio
    • 1
  • Paola Magioncalda
    • 1
  • Valentina Marozzi
    • 1
  • Andrea Presta
    • 1
  • Bruno Sterlini
    • 3
  • Paola Contini
    • 4
  • Mario Amore
    • 1
  • Pantaleo Fornaro
    • 1
  • Matteo Martino
    • 1
  1. 1.Section of Psychiatry, Department of NeuroscienceIRCCS AOU San Martino-IST, Ospedale San MartinoGenoaItaly
  2. 2.Scienze della FormazioneUniversity of CataniaCataniaItaly
  3. 3.Section of Anatomy, Department of Experimental MedicineUniversity of GenoaGenoaItaly
  4. 4.Section of Immunology, Department of Internal MedicineIRCCS AOU San Martino-ISTGenoaItaly

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