Inflammatory Associations of Peripheral Oxytocin, C-Reactive Protein Levels with Depression Among Adult Age Group with Major Depressive DisorderAuthor(s): Amer Fadhil Alhaideri, Azher Nema Mohammed Al-Agam, Hayder Abdul-Amir M Al-Hindy*, Mazin J Mousa, Hawraa Kadhum and Saja Hatem
Background: Major Depressive Disorder (MDD) is a common mental illness. Even though MDD is not exactly an inflammatory disorder, inflammation displays a substantial input, which may even predict the new onset of depressive thoughts. As a "nonspecific acute phase reactant" synthesized in the liver cells as an inflammatory response, C-reactive protein (CRP) is a marker of "low-grade inflammation as noted by overwhelming shreds of evidence. Some scientists assume a likely neuro immune psychological interaction between negative affect (depressive attitude, anger, anxiety, and poor prosperity), and inflammatory responses. Oxytocin a neuropeptide hormone has wide physiological effects, the ability to support health, and impact behavior as revealed by the growing evidence for its actions through the immune response and as an anti-inflammatory issue. The data concerning the influence of oxytocin hormone in MDD is somewhat limited.
Our aim in this work was to assess the inflammatory associations of peripheral oxytocin and CRP levels in depression, among the adult age group with MDD.
Materials and methods: This observational study had included 180 patients recognized as MDD after their fulfillment of "DSM-5 criteria for MDD version 7.0.2", using the "Mini International Neuropsychiatric Interview". A self-administered form had applied for evaluating the severity of depression according to the criteria of MDD by using a 9-items questionnaire based on the "Patient Health Questionnaire depression module (PHQ-9)". BMI calculation and biochemical assays of serum levels of oxytocin and CRP had been achieved for all participants. Variations in demographic variables were calculated using t-tests for continuous variables and Pearson correlations had used to judge associations between the parameters. ROC curve had used to inspect the predictive ability of both CRP and oxytocin to diagnose severe depressive symptoms.
Results: The mean serum CRP levels were relatively high (9.0 ± 9.2 mg/ml) among MDD patients, whereas the mean oxytocin was 33.5 pg/ml. There were nonsignificant alterations between sexes in all study parameters other than oxytocin, which was higher among females. No significant disparities in the distribution of both oxytocin and CRP serum values among the scores of PHQ-9. A significant difference in the mean levels of serum CRP but not oxytocin between those having mild and severe PHQ-9 scores. Those who were severely symptomatic revealed higher levels of CRP in their sera. A negative correlation between oxytocin and CRP was noticed. ROC analyses were applied to test the diagnostic ability of oxytocin and CRP for severe MDD. CRP exposed better expectedness to discriminate those with severe from mild MDD: AUC=0.731, sensitivity=0.78, specificity=0.60, and p>0.08. While oxytocin displayed poorer predictability: AUC=0.560, specificity=60, sensitivity=40 and p>0.05.
Conclusion: A significant difference in the mean levels of serum inflammatory marker (CRP) but not oxytocin between those having mild and severe PHQ-9 depressive scores. Those who were severely symptomatic revealed higher levels of CRP in their sera. A negative correlation between oxytocin and CRP was noticed.