An Open-Label Trial of Riluzole in Patients with Treatment-Resistant Major Depression

Carlos A. Zarate, Jennifer L. Payne, Jorge Quiroz, Jonathan Sporn, Kirk K. Denicoff, David Luckenbaugh, Dennis S. Charney, Husseini K. Manji

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

315 Scopus citations


Objective: This study was conducted to determine the efficacy and safety of riluzole, a glutamate-modulating agent, in patients with recurrent major depression. Method: After a 1-week drug-free period, subjects 18 years or older with a diagnosis of recurrent major depression and a Montgomery-Asberg Depression Rating Scale score ≥20 received riluzole monotherapy (100-200 mg/day) openly for 6 weeks. Results: Nineteen treatment-resistant depressed patients, 53% of whom were classified as having stage 2 treatment resistance or greater, received riluzole at a mean dose of 169 mg/day. Significant improvement occurred during weeks 3 through 6 for all patients and weeks 2 through 6 for completers. Conclusions: Although preliminary these results indicate that riluzole may have antidepressant properties in some patients.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)171-174
Number of pages4
JournalAmerican Journal of Psychiatry
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2004
Externally publishedYes


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