Investigation of blood mRNA biomarkers for suicidality in an independent sample

N. Mullins, K. Hodgson, K. E. Tansey, N. Perroud, W. Maier, O. Mors, M. Rietschel, J. Hauser, N. Henigsberg, D. Souery, K. Aitchison, A. Farmer, P. McGuffin, G. Breen, R. Uher, C. M. Lewis

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10 Scopus citations


Changes in the blood expression levels of SAT1, PTEN, MAP3K3 and MARCKS genes have been reported as biomarkers of high versus low suicidality state (Le-Niculescu et al.). Here, we investigate these expression biomarkers in the Genome-Based Therapeutic Drugs for Depression (GENDEP) study, of patients with major depressive disorder on a 12-week antidepressant treatment. Blood gene expression levels were available at baseline and week 8 for patients who experienced suicidal ideation during the study (n=20) versus those who did not (n=37). The analysis is well powered to detect the effect sizes reported in the original paper. Within either group, there was no significant change in the expression of these four genes over the course of the study, despite increasing suicidal ideation or initiation of antidepressant treatment. Comparison of the groups showed that the gene expression did not differ between patients with or without treatment-related suicidality. This independent study does not support the validity of the proposed biomarkers.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)e474
JournalTranslational Psychiatry
StatePublished - 2014
Externally publishedYes


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