Role of inflammation as reflected by serum hsCRP and ferritin level in major depressive disorder

Soma Gupta, Sharmistha Chatterjee, Sanjoy Kunti, Kanika Mandi Chowdhury, Subhendu Dutta, Saswati Nath, Harendra Nath Das


Background: The relationship between depression and inflammation has been strengthened by different studies for which Immune Cytokine Mechanism has been proposed to explain pathogenesis of depression.

Methods: The role of inflammation in major depressive disorder (MDD) has been evaluated in this study among 101 patients suffering from MDD along with 106 age and sex matched control subjects. Two well known acute phase reactant proteins namely hsCRP and Ferritin were assayed in all study subjects by Enzyme Immuno Assay method.

Results: Concentration of hsCRP in serum was found to be significantly increased in all patients suffering from MDD whereas Ferritin level was found to be significantly decreased in male MDD subjects only (male: 70.6 ng/ml±53.54 ng/ml in MDD vs 100.16 ng/ml±39.93 in controls; female: 38.43 ng/ml±11.2 in MDD vs 39.93 ng/ml±15.0 in controls). There was no significant alteration of the parameters among different grades of MDD. The possibility of these two parameters to be used as biomarkers has also been evaluated by ROC curve.

Conclusions: The significant change in hsCRP & Ferritin which is not associated with grade wise alteration suggests that probably inflammation is the early event which causes depression. Therefore no gradual change is observed with increase in severity of the disease. hsCRP can be used as a biomarker of Inflammation in MDD cases.


MDD, Inflammation, Acute phase reactant, Ferritin, hsCRP

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