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Melatonin levels in drug-free patients with major depression from the southern hemisphere.

Carvalho, LA; Gorenstein, C; Moreno, RA; Markus, RP; (2006) Melatonin levels in drug-free patients with major depression from the southern hemisphere. Psychoneuroendocrinology , 31 (6) pp. 761-768. 10.1016/j.psyneuen.2006.02.010.

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Abstract

The secretion of melatonin has been shown as abnormal in some depressed patients, but most such studies were conducted in the northern hemisphere and with severely depressed inpatients. The aim of this study was to evaluate melatonin excretion profiles in major depressive outpatients from São Paulo, Brazil, individually matched to well-screened healthy volunteers to examine whether melatonin abnormalities are also present in patients from the southern hemisphere, and in less severely ill patients. We analyzed 32 drug-free, depressed outpatients and 32 psychiatrically healthy volunteers matched for age and gender. We also examined a set of 15 drug-free depressed outpatients and 15 healthy volunteers that were matched not only for age and gender, but also for body mass index and season, all factors known to influence melatonin excretion in humans. All patients fulfilled DSM-IV criteria for major depression. We evaluated major urinary metabolite of melatonin, 6-sulphatoxymelatonin (aMT6s), produced over 24 h and divided into four periods (06:00-12:00, 12:00-08:00, 18:00-24:00 and 24:00-06:00 h). aMT6s measurements during the 24 and 6 h intervals were similar in the 32 depressed patients and 32 healthy volunteers matched for age and gender; further matching for body mass index and season did not alter the results. Our study supports others in which depressed patients were found to have similar melatonin levels than healthy volunteers. Melatonin excretion has been considered a physiological index for noradrenergic function, which in some studies were found to be altered than depressed patients. It is conceivable that the alteration of nocturnal melatonin in depressed patients occurs only in more severe depression.

Type: Article
Title: Melatonin levels in drug-free patients with major depression from the southern hemisphere.
Location: England
DOI: 10.1016/j.psyneuen.2006.02.010
Keywords: Adult, Brazil, Circadian Rhythm, Depressive Disorder, Major, Female, Geography, Humans, Male, Matched-Pair Analysis, Melatonin, Photoperiod, Reference Values, Seasons, Severity of Illness Index
UCL classification: UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Pop Health Sciences > Institute of Epidemiology and Health
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Pop Health Sciences > Institute of Epidemiology and Health > Behavioural Science and Health
URI: http://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1340361
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