Clinical Psychopharmacology and Neuroscience Papers in Press available online.

Clinical Utility of Fluid Biomarker in Depressive Disorder
Alessandro Serretti
Department of Biomedical and NeuroMotor Sciences, University of Bologna
Major depressive disorders are ranked as the single largest contributor to non-fatal health loss and biomarkers could largely improve our routine clinical activity by predicting disease course and guiding treatment. However there is still a dearth of valid biomarkers in the field of psychiatry. The initial assumption that a single biomarker can capture the myriad of complex processes proved to be naive. The purpose of this paper is to critically review the field and to illustrate the possible practical application for routine clinical care. Biomarkers derived from DNA analysis are the ones that have received the most attention. Other potential candidates include circulating transcription products, proteins, and inflammatory markers. DNA polygenic risk scores proved to be useful in other fields of medicine and preliminary results suggest that they could be useful both as risk and diagnostic biomarkers also in depression and for the choice of treatment. A number of other possible fluid biomarkers are currently under investigation for diagnosis, outcome prediction, staging, and stratification of interventions, however research is still needed before they can be used for routine clinical care. When available, clinicians may be able to receive a lab report with detailed information about disease risk, outcome prediction, and specific indications about preferred treatments.
Accepted Manuscript [Submitted on 2022-07-26, Accepted on 2022-08-03]