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Longitudinal Association between Inflammatory Markers and Specific Symptoms of Depression in a Prospective Birth Cohort

Chu, AL; Stochl, J; Lewis, G; Zammit, S; Jones, PB; Khandaker, GM; (2019) Longitudinal Association between Inflammatory Markers and Specific Symptoms of Depression in a Prospective Birth Cohort. Brain, Behavior, and Immunity , 76 pp. 74-81. 10.1016/j.bbi.2018.11.007. Green open access

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Abstract

BACKGROUND: Low-grade inflammation is associated with depression, but studies of specific symptoms are relatively scarce. Association between inflammatory markers and specific symptoms may provide insights into potential mechanism of inflammation-related depression. Using longitudinal data, we have tested whether childhood serum interleukin 6 (IL-6) and C-reactive protein (CRP) levels are associated with specific depressive symptoms in early adulthood. METHODS: In the ALSPAC birth cohort, serum IL-6 and CRP levels were assessed at age 9 years and 19 depressive symptoms were assessed at age 18 years. We used modified Poisson generalised linear regression with robust error variance to estimate the risk ratio (RR) and 95% confidence interval (95% CI) for each depressive symptom. In addition, we used confirmatory factor analysis to create two continuous latent variables representing somatic/neurovegetative and psychological dimension scores. Structural equation modelling was used to test the associations between IL-6 and these dimension scores. RESULTS: Based on data from 2731 participants, IL-6 was associated with diurnal mood variation, concentration difficulties, fatigue and sleep disturbances. The adjusted RRs for these symptoms at age 18 years for participants in top, compared with bottom, third of IL-6 at age 9 years were 1.75 (95% CI, 1.13-2.69) for diurnal mood variation, 1.50 (95% CI, 1.11-2.02) for concentration difficulties, 1.31 (95% CI, 1.12-1.54) for fatigue, and 1.24 (95% CI, 1.01-1.52) for sleep disturbances was. At dimension level, IL-6 was associated with both somatic/neurovegetative (β=0.059, SE=0.024, P=0.013) and psychological (β=0.056, SE=0.023, P=0.016) scores. CONCLUSIONS: Inflammation is associated with specific symptoms of depression. Associations with so-called somatic/neurovegetative symptoms of depression such as fatigue, sleep disturbances and diurnal mood variation indicate that these symptoms could be useful treatment targets and markers of treatment response in clinical trials of anti-inflammatory treatment for depression.

Type: Article
Title: Longitudinal Association between Inflammatory Markers and Specific Symptoms of Depression in a Prospective Birth Cohort
Location: Netherlands
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1016/j.bbi.2018.11.007
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.bbi.2018.11.007
Language: English
Additional information: This is an open access article under the CC BY license (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Keywords: ALSPAC, C-reactive Protein, Cohort Study, Depression, Immunopsychiatry, Inflammation, Interleukin 6, Psychological Symptoms, Somatic Symptoms
UCL classification: UCL
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 Brain Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > Division of Psychiatry
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10061886
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