Shame on the Scaremongers

  • by: |
  • 12/13/2006
On the heels of the hysteria about anti-depressant, suicide and black boxes....

Genes May Alter Antidepressant Effects
Study May Help Find Way to Select Antidepressant Most Effective for Patient
By Miranda Hitti
WebMD Medical News Reviewed By Louise Chang, MD
on Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Dec. 6, 2006 -- Variations in certain genes may affect how well depressed people respond to different antidepressants, new research shows.

The report comes from Francis McMahon, MD, of the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH).

"Medications to treat depression are widely available, but no one treatment works for everyone," McMahon says in a news release

There is no test to predict which of the various antidepressants will work best for a particular patient. It can take trial and error over weeks or months to find the right one.

"We are seeking to better understand why this is the case, and, using genetic markers, develop personalized treatments that give patients the best chance at remission," McMahon says.

"Ultimately, our goal is to put together a panel of genetic markers that can guide treatment decisions and help doctors choose an antidepressant that will work best for an individual patient," he says.

That panel of genetic markers isn't complete yet. But McMahon's findings may help."

And there is this comment....

"There is a heritable component to suicidal behaviour, encouraging the search for the associated risk alleles. Given the putative role of the 5-HT (5-hydroxytryptamine; serotonin) system in suicidal behaviour, serotonergic genes are leading candidates. "

Psychol Med. 2003 Jul;33(5):775-83. Links
Deliberate self-harm is associated with allelic variation in the tryptophan hydroxylase gene (TPH A779C), but not with polymorphisms in five other serotonergic genes.

Center for Medicine in the Public Interest is a nonprofit, non-partisan organization promoting innovative solutions that advance medical progress, reduce health disparities, extend life and make health care more affordable, preventive and patient-centered. CMPI also provides the public, policymakers and the media a reliable source of independent scientific analysis on issues ranging from personalized medicine, food and drug safety, health care reform and comparative effectiveness.

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