Evidence-Based Pharmacotherapy of Generalised Anxiety Disorder: Focus on Agomelatine

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Recent network meta-analyses support the use of pharmacotherapy in patients with generalised anxiety disorder (GAD). Compared with placebo, drug treatment can improve symptoms and quality of life, and is more effective in preventing relapse. Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors and serotonin–norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors are generally considered the first-line agents of choice in GAD, but in some patients, an alternative evidence-based treatment with a different mechanism of action may also be considered (e.g. those with severe GAD, inadequate response, adverse effects and/or contraindications). One example is agomelatine, a melatonin receptor agonist and serotonin 2C (5-HT2C) receptor antagonist, which has been shown to have efficacy that is greater than placebo in patients with GAD, and to have a tolerability profile that compares favourably with that of escitalopram. Both agomelatine and escitalopram are efficacious in treating patients with GAD, including those with severe symptoms. [MediaObject not available: see fulltext.].

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)52-60
Number of pages9
JournalAdvances in Therapy
StatePublished - Sep 2021
Externally publishedYes


  • Agomelatine
  • Anxiety disorders
  • Serotonin 5-HT2C receptor
  • Serotonin uptake inhibitors


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