Major depressive disorder (MDD) presents different clinical features in women and men, with women being more affected and responding differently to antidepressant treatment. Specific molecular mechanisms underlying these differences are not well studied and this narrative review aims at providing an overview of the neurobiological features underlying sex-differences in biological systems involved in MDD pathophysiology and response to antidepressant treatment, focusing on human studies. The majority of the reviewed studies were performed through candidate gene approaches, focusing on biological systems involved in MDD pathophysiology, including the stress response, inflammatory and immune, monoaminergic, neurotrophic, gamma-aminobutyric acid and glutamatergic, and oxytocin systems. The influence of the endocrine system and sex-specific hormone effects are also discussed. Genome, epigenome and transcriptome-wide approaches are less frequently performed and most of these studies do not focus on sex-specific alterations, revealing a paucity of omics studies directed to unravel sex-based differences in MDD. Few studies about sex-related differences in antidepressant treatment response have been conducted, mostly involving the inflammatory system, with less evidence on the monoaminergic system and sparse evidence in omics approaches. Our review covers the importance of accounting for sex-differences in research, optimizing patient stratification for a more precise diagnostic and individualized treatment for women and men.

Biological markers of sex-based differences in major depressive disorder and in antidepressant response

Pisanu, Claudia;Squassina, Alessio;
2023-01-01

Abstract

Major depressive disorder (MDD) presents different clinical features in women and men, with women being more affected and responding differently to antidepressant treatment. Specific molecular mechanisms underlying these differences are not well studied and this narrative review aims at providing an overview of the neurobiological features underlying sex-differences in biological systems involved in MDD pathophysiology and response to antidepressant treatment, focusing on human studies. The majority of the reviewed studies were performed through candidate gene approaches, focusing on biological systems involved in MDD pathophysiology, including the stress response, inflammatory and immune, monoaminergic, neurotrophic, gamma-aminobutyric acid and glutamatergic, and oxytocin systems. The influence of the endocrine system and sex-specific hormone effects are also discussed. Genome, epigenome and transcriptome-wide approaches are less frequently performed and most of these studies do not focus on sex-specific alterations, revealing a paucity of omics studies directed to unravel sex-based differences in MDD. Few studies about sex-related differences in antidepressant treatment response have been conducted, mostly involving the inflammatory system, with less evidence on the monoaminergic system and sparse evidence in omics approaches. Our review covers the importance of accounting for sex-differences in research, optimizing patient stratification for a more precise diagnostic and individualized treatment for women and men.
2023
Antidepressant response; Biomarkers; Major depressive disorder; Sex-based molecular mechanisms
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11584/390644
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