Inflammation and depression in young people: A systematic review and proposed inflammatory pathways

Yara J Toenders, Liliana Laskaris, Christopher G Davey, Michael Berk, Yuri Milaneschi, Femke Lamers, Brenda W J H Penninx, Lianne Schmaal

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlePopular

30 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Depression onset peaks during adolescence and young adulthood. Current treatments are only moderately effective, driving the search for novel pathophysiological mechanisms underlying youth depression. Inflammatory dysregulation has been shown in adults with depression, however, less is known about inflammation in youth depression. This systematic review identified 109 studies examining the association between inflammation and youth depression and showed subtle evidence for inflammatory dysregulation in youth depression. Longitudinal studies support the bidirectional association between inflammation and depression in youth. We hypothesise multiple inflammatory pathways contributing to depression. More research is needed on anti-inflammatory treatments, potentially tailored to individual symptom profiles.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)315-327
Number of pages13
JournalMolecular Psychiatry
Volume27
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2022

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was funded by a Wellcome Trust Mental Health Priority Area ‘Active Ingredients’ commission awarded to LS at Orygen. LS is supported by a NHMRC Career Development Fellowship (1140764), and the Dame Kate Campbell Fellowship from the Faculty of Medicine, Dentistry and Health Sciences at The University of Melbourne. CGD is supported by an NHMRC Career Development Award (141738). MB is supported by a NHMRC Senior Principal Research Fellowship (1156072). FL is supported by ZonMw: The Netherlands Organisation for Health Research and Development (project number: 636310017).

Funding Information:
MB is a co-inventor of two provisional patents regarding the use of NAC and related compounds for psychiatric indications, which, while assigned to the Mental Health Research Institute, could lead to personal remuneration upon a commercialisation event. MB has served as a speaker for Astra Zeneca, Bristol Myers Squibb, Eli Lilly, Glaxo SmithKline, Janssen Cilag, Lundbeck, Merck, Pfizer, Sanofi Synthelabo, Servier, Solvay, and Wyeth; and has served as a consultant to Astra Zeneca, Bristol Myers Squibb, Eli Lilly, Glaxo SmithKline, Janssen Cilag, Lundbeck Merck, and Servier. BP has received (non-related) research funding from Jansen Research and Boehringer Ingelheim. The other authors report no competing interests.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021, The Author(s), under exclusive licence to Springer Nature Limited.

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