OPEN Foundation

J. Rosenblat

Effectiveness of intravenous ketamine in mood disorder patients with a history of neurostimulation

Abstract

Background: Patients unsuccessfully treated by neurostimulation may represent a highly intractable subgroup of depression. While the efficacy of intravenous (IV) ketamine has been established in patients with treatment-resistant depression (TRD), there is an interest to evaluate its effectiveness in a subpopulation with a history of neurostimulation.

Methods: This retrospective, posthoc analysis compared the effects of four infusions of IV ketamine in 135 (x̄ = 44 ± 15.4 years of age) neurostimulation-naïve patients to 103 (x̄ = 47 ± 13.9 years of age) patients with a history of neurostimulation. The primary outcome evaluated changes in depression severity, measured by the Quick Inventory for Depression Symptomatology-Self Report 16-Item (QIDS-SR16). Secondary outcomes evaluated suicidal ideation (SI), anxiety severity, measured by the Generalized Anxiety Disorder 7-Item (GAD-7), and consummatory anhedonia, measured by the Snaith-Hamilton Pleasure Scale (SHAPS).

Results: Following four infusions, both cohorts reported a significant reduction in QIDS-SR16 Total Score (F (4, 648) = 73.4, P < .001), SI (F (4, 642) = 28.6, P < .001), GAD-7 (F (2, 265) = 53.8, P < .001), and SHAPS (F (2, 302) = 45.9, P < .001). No between-group differences emerged. Overall, the neurostimulation-naïve group had a mean reduction in QIDS-SR16 Total Score of 6.4 (standard deviation [SD] = 5.3), whereas the history of neurostimulation patients reported a 4.3 (SD = 5.3) point reduction.

Conclusion: IV ketamine was effective in reducing symptoms of depression, SI, anxiety, and anhedonia in both cohorts in this large, well-characterized community-based sample of adults with TRD.

Rodrigues, N. B., Siegel, A., Lipsitz, O., Cha, D. S., Gill, H., Nasri, F., Simonson, K., Shekotikhina, M., Lee, Y., Subramaniapillai, M., Kratiuk, K., Lin, K., Ho, R., Mansur, R. B., McIntyre, R. S., & Rosenblat, J. D. (2020). Effectiveness of intravenous ketamine in mood disorder patients with a history of neurostimulation. CNS spectrums, 1–7. Advance online publication. https://doi.org/10.1017/S1092852920002187

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Does body mass index predict response to intravenous ketamine treatment in adults with major depressive and bipolar disorder? Results from the Canadian Rapid Treatment Center of Excellence

Abstract

Background: Higher body mass index (BMI) has been found to predict greater antidepressant response to intravenous (IV) ketamine treatment. We evaluated the association between BMI and response to repeat-dose IV ketamine in patients with treatment-resistant depression (TRD).

Methods: Adults (N = 230) with TRD received four infusions of IV ketamine at a community-based clinic. Changes in symptoms of depression (ie, Quick Inventory for Depressive Symptomatology-Self-Report 16; QIDS-SR16), suicidal ideation (SI; ie, QIDS-SR16 SI item), anxiety (ie, Generalized Anxiety Disorder-7 Scale), anhedonic severity (ie, Snaith-Hamilton Pleasure Scale), and functioning (ie, Sheehan Disability Scale) following infusions were evaluated. Participants were stratified by BMI as normal (18.0-24.9 kg/m2; n = 72), overweight (25-29.9 kg/m2; n = 76), obese I (30-34.9 kg/m2; n = 47), or obese II (≥35.0 kg/m2; n = 35).

Results: Similar antidepressant effects with repeat-dose ketamine were reported between BMI groups (P = .261). In addition, categorical partial response (P = .149), response (P = .526), and remission (P = .232) rates were similar between the four BMI groups.

Conclusions: The findings are limited by the observational, open-label design of this retrospective analysis. Pretreatment BMI did not predict response to IV ketamine, which was effective regardless of BMI.

Lipsitz, O., McIntyre, R. S., Rodrigues, N. B., Lee, Y., Gill, H., Subramaniapillai, M., Kratiuk, K., Nasri, F., Mansur, R. B., & Rosenblat, J. D. (2020). Does body mass index predict response to intravenous ketamine treatment in adults with major depressive and bipolar disorder? Results from the Canadian Rapid Treatment Center of Excellence. CNS spectrums, 1–9. Advance online publication. https://doi.org/10.1017/S1092852920002102

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The Effects of Ketamine on Cognition in Treatment-Resistant Depression: A Systematic Review and Priority Avenues for Future Research

Abstract

Replicated evidence has documented cognitive deficits in populations with treatment-resistant depression (TRD). Approximately 40 % of patients with MDD present with impairment of one or more cognitive domains. As such, there is an unmet need to discover treatments that have pro-cognitive effects in TRD patients. Ketamine has demonstrated efficacy as a rapid-onset intervention for the treatment of depression. The objective of the current review was to assess the effects of ketamine on cognition in TRD patients. We systematically searched PubMed, Google Scholar and PsycINFO between database inception to March 24th, 2020. We identified five studies that evaluated cognition in TRD populations following ketamine treatment. All studies included a 0.5 mg/kg subanesthetic intravenous (IV) administration of ketamine. One study found significant improvements in complex (p = .008) and simple (p = .027) working memory and one study found improvements in visual learning memory following IV ketamine infusions (p = .014). Improvements in speed of processing and verbal learning memory were observed in anxious TRD participants only. Importantly, a subanesthetic dose of IV ketamine does not worsen cognitive function.

Gill, H., Gill, B., Rodrigues, N. B., Lipsitz, O., Rosenblat, J. D., El-Halabi, S., Nasri, F., Mansur, R. B., Lee, Y., & McIntyre, R. S. (2021). The Effects of Ketamine on Cognition in Treatment-Resistant Depression: A Systematic Review and Priority Avenues for Future Research. Neuroscience and biobehavioral reviews, 120, 78–85. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.neubiorev.2020.11.020

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The effectiveness of intravenous ketamine in adults with treatment-resistant major depressive disorder and bipolar disorder presenting with prominent anxiety: Results from the Canadian Rapid Treatment Center of Excellence

Abstract

Background: Individuals meeting criteria for treatment-resistant depression (TRD) are differentially affected by high levels of anxiety symptoms.

Aims: There is a need to identify the efficacy of novel rapid-onset treatments in adults with mood disorders and comorbid anxious-distress.

Methods: This study included patients with treatment-resistant major depressive disorder (MDD) or bipolar disorder (BD) who were receiving intravenous (IV) ketamine treatment at a community-based clinic.Anxious-distress was proxied using items from the Quick Inventory of Depressive Symptomatology-Self Report 16-item (QIDS-SR16) and Generalized Anxiety Disorder 7-item (GAD7) scales. The difference in QIDS-SR16 total score, QIDS-SR16 suicidal ideation (SI) item and GAD7 score were analyzed between groups.

Results: A total of 209 adults with MDD (n = 177) and BD (n = 26) were included in this analysis. From this sample, 94 patients (mean = 45 ± 13.9 years) met the criteria for anxious-distress. Individuals meeting the criteria for anxious-distress exhibited a significantly greater reduction in QIDS-SR16 total score following four infusions (p = 0.02) when compared with patients not meeting the anxious-distress criteria. Both anxious-distressed and low-anxiety patients exhibited a significant reduction in SI (p < 0.0001) following four infusions.Finally, there was a significantly greater reduction in anxiety symptoms in the anxious-distress group compared with the non-anxious distress group following three (p = 0.02) and four infusions (p < 0.001).

Conclusion: Patients with TRD and prominent anxiety receiving IV ketamine exhibited a significant reduction in depressive, SI and anxiety symptoms.

McIntyre, R. S., Rodrigues, N. B., Lipsitz, O., Nasri, F., Gill, H., Lui, L. M., Subramaniapillai, M., Kratiuk, K., Teopiz, K., Ho, R., Lee, Y., Mansur, R. B., & Rosenblat, J. D. (2021). The effectiveness of intravenous ketamine in adults with treatment-resistant major depressive disorder and bipolar disorder presenting with prominent anxiety: Results from the Canadian Rapid Treatment Center of Excellence. Journal of psychopharmacology (Oxford, England), 35(2), 128–136. https://doi.org/10.1177/0269881120954048

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The emerging role of psilocybin and MDMA in the treatment of mental illness

Abstract

Introduction: Mental illness has a chronic course of illness with a number of clinical manifestations. Affected individuals experience significant functional, emotional, cognitive, and/or behavioral impairments. The growing prevalence of mental illness has been associated with significant social and economic costs. Indeed, the economic burden of mental illness is estimated to exceed $1.8 trillion USD over the next 30 years. A significant number of individuals affected by mental illness fail to respond to first-line treatment options. Therefore, there remains an unmet need for rapidly attenuating therapeutic options for mental health disorders with minimal social and economic burden.

Areas covered: The paucity of novel treatment options warrants a renewed investigation of psychedelic-based psychotherapy. Herein, the authors will evaluate the therapeutic potential of traditional psychedelics, psilocybin, and MDMA, in the treatment of mental illness with a narrative review of available literature.

Expert opinion: Psychedelics, such as psilocybin and MDMA, offer an alternative avenue of therapy for many mental health disorders. Available evidence indicates that psychedelics may offer a single-dose, rapid effect model that have robust effects with treatment-resistant mental disorders and a unique advantage as a possible monotherapy for mental illness. Novel clinical trials that evaluate the safety, tolerability, and efficacy in clinically representative populations are warranted.

Gill, H., Gill, B., Chen-Li, D., El-Halabi, S., Rodrigues, N. B., Cha, D. S., Lipsitz, O., Lee, Y., Rosenblat, J. D., Majeed, A., Mansur, R. B., Nasri, F., Ho, R., & McIntyre, R. S. (2020). The emerging role of psilocybin and MDMA in the treatment of mental illness. Expert review of neurotherapeutics, 20(12), 1263–1273. https://doi.org/10.1080/14737175.2020.1826931

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Registered Clinical Trials Investigating Ketamine for Psychiatric Disorders

Abstract

As interest has grown in the potential psychiatric applications of ketamine, the number of registered clinical trials has grown substantially. Herein, we summarize and analyze clinical trials registered with ClinicalTrials.gov that assess the treatment of any psychiatric disorder with ketamine or ketamine enantiomers (e.g., S-ketamine, R-ketamine), with a focus on ongoing clinical trials. A ClinicalTrials.gov search on February 21, 2020 returned 140 registered trials. Frequency data was analyzed to determine the distribution of study designs. The majority of trials (70%) investigated the therapeutic effect of ketamine in mood disorders (unipolar: 60%, bipolar: 0.7%, both: 5.7%). Suicidal ideation (13.1%), post-traumatic stress disorder (5.4%), and obsessive-compulsive disorder (3.6%) were also investigated. Intravenous (IV) administration was the most common route with 87% of the studies using IV ketamine. Single-dose studies represented 50% of IV ketamine studies. Few studies were assessing maintenance treatment. Most studies were phase I or II with few definitive phase III trials registered. Given the large number of ongoing studies assessing psychiatric application of ketamine, researchers and relevant stakeholders should consider not only completed, published studies, but also ongoing registered studies in adjudicating the most relevant research questions. More definitive phase III trials and maintenance studies of IV ketamine for mood disorders are required, as numerous completed and ongoing studies have already assessed and demonstrated the proof-of-concept of acute antidepressant effects in phase I and II trials.
Peyrovian, B., McIntyre, R., Phan, L., Lui, L. M., Gill, H., Majeed, A., … & Rosenblat, J. D. (2020). Registered clinical trials investigating ketamine for psychiatric disorders. Journal of Psychiatric Research., https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jpsychires.2020.03.020
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Predictors of Response to Ketamine in Treatment Resistant Major Depressive Disorder and Bipolar Disorder

Abstract

OBJECTIVES:
Extant evidence indicates that ketamine exerts rapid antidepressant effects in treatment-resistant depressive (TRD) symptoms as a part of major depressive disorder (MDD) and bipolar disorder (BD). The identification of depressed sub-populations that are more likely to benefit from ketamine treatment remains a priority. In keeping with this view, the present narrative review aims to identify the pretreatment predictors of response to ketamine in TRD as part of MDD and BD.
METHOD:
Electronic search engines PubMed/MEDLINE, ClinicalTrials.gov, and Scopus were searched for relevant articles from inception to January 2018. The search term ketamine was cross-referenced with the terms depression, major depressive disorder, bipolar disorder, predictors, and response and/or remission.
RESULTS:
Multiple baseline pretreatment predictors of response were identified, including clinical (i.e., Body Mass Index (BMI), history of suicide, family history of alcohol use disorder), peripheral biochemistry (i.e., adiponectin levels, vitamin B12 levels), polysomnography (abnormalities in delta sleep ratio), neurochemistry (i.e., glutamine/glutamate ratio), neuroimaging (i.e., anterior cingulate cortex activity), genetic variation (i.e., Val66Met BDNF allele), and cognitive functioning (i.e., processing speed). High BMI and a positive family history of alcohol use disorder were the most replicated predictors.
CONCLUSIONS:
A pheno-biotype of depression more, or less likely, to benefit with ketamine treatment is far from complete. Notwithstanding, metabolic-inflammatory alterations are emerging as possible pretreatment response predictors of depressive symptom improvement, most notably being cognitive impairment. Sophisticated data-driven computational methods that are iterative and agnostic are more likely to provide actionable baseline pretreatment predictive information.
Rong, C., Park, C., Rosenblat, J. D., Subramaniapillai, M., Zuckerman, H., Fus, D., … & Cha, D. S. (2018). Predictors of Response to Ketamine in Treatment Resistant Major Depressive Disorder and Bipolar Disorder. International journal of environmental research and public health15(4), 771. 10.3390/ijerph15040771
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