Genetic Tests for Antidepressants – CNS Dose

Peter Forster Best Practices, GPS Update, Major Depression, Testing, Treatments of Depression Leave a Comment

About a year ago we reviewed the data on the use of genetic tests for antidepressants as well as other medications and identified three pharmacogenetic panels that seem to have research support: Genecept by Genomind, Genesight, and CNS Dose. Of these three we have been using Genecept and Genesight with some success but now we are happy to add to …

Neuroscience Based Nomenclature

Peter Forster Best Practices, Psychobiology, Treatments of Depression

Neuroscience Based Nomenclature is an initiative by a number of prestigious organizations supporting research in neuroscience and psychiatry to change the way that we talk about psychotropic / psychiatric medications. Why this might be useful is illustrated by conversations that are likely familiar to all psychiatrists… A severely depressed patient with bipolar 1 is discussing her need for a change …

Antidepressant Selection Based on Symptom Clusters

Peter Forster Best Practices, Major Depression, Testing

Can we do a better job of antidepressant selection based on symptom clusters, analyzed using machine learning techniques? Perhaps so. And if so we will avoid a great deal of unnecessary suffering as people try one medication after another until the find the right medication or combination of medications to treat their depression. That is the premise behind an ambitious …

Antidepressant Response Linked to Norepinephrine Transporter Genotype

Peter Forster Best Practices, Major Depression, Testing, Treatments of Depression

A large study of patients treated with venlafaxine found that antidepressant response was linked to the norepinephrine transporter (NET) genotype. The study looked at response in a sample of 350 individuals over the age of 60 with severe depression (MADRS greater than or equal to 15) who were treated with venlafaxine up to a dose of 300 mg a day. …

SSRIs and Pregnancy Updates

Peter Forster Physical Conditions and Health, Treatments of Depression

Several recent articles provide additional information about the effects on the infant of exposure to SSRI antidepressants during pregnancy. A large study published in Pediatrics adds to information that suggests that exposure to SSRI antidepressants, particularly late in pregnancy, may be associated with birth complications. As with other studies, one major limitation in the design of the study is that it …

Why SSRIs May Increase Anxiety Short Term

Peter Forster Psychobiology, Treatments of Depression

SSRIs are among the most commonly prescribed medications for chronic anxiety, but not infrequently these medications may be associated with a short term increase in symptoms that precedes the long term benefit. In an elegant series of studies published online in late August 2016 in the premier scientific journal, Nature, researchers from the NIH and the University of North Carolina at …

Functional Brain Imaging and Antidepressant Response

Peter Forster Basic Science, Testing, Treatments of Depression

One of the most exciting initiatives currently in the important area of  the treatment of depression is the International Study to Predict Optimized Treatment in Depression (iSPOT-D). This large multi-center initiative is based on a private industry and academic partnership that is designed to both identify best practices in the treatment of depression and also commercialize them. The most recent publication from this …

New Antidepressant Stimulates Neuron Growth

Peter Forster Treatments of Depression

The results of a clinical trial published in December in Molecular Psychiatry suggest that a new medication (NSI-189) which has been shown to increase the production of cells in the hippocampus and the amygdala in pre-clinical studies may help treat major depression. The results highlight the evidence that has been accumulating that stimulating the production of new cells in the hippocampus (neurogenesis) …

Antidepressants Update

Peter Forster Major Depression, Treatments of Depression, Website Update

I just wanted to make a quick note that I recently posted a major update of the information on this site about antidepressants. This follows the recent introduction of a few interesting new antidepressant medications. I hope to expand that by adding a page talking about atypical antipsychotics and perhaps other classes of medications routinely used in this practice. Since …