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Current Neuropharmacology



ISSN (Print): 1570-159X
ISSN (Online): 1875-6190

Somatic Drugs for Psychiatric Diseases: Aspirin or Simvastatin for Depression?

Author(s): Juan Gibert Rahola

Volume 10 , Issue 2 , 2012

Page: [139 - 158] Pages: 20

DOI: 10.2174/157015912800604533

Price: $65


The evolution in the understanding of the neurobiology of most prevalent mental disorders such as major depressive disorder (MDD), bipolar disorder or schizophrenia has not gone hand in hand with the synthesis and clinical use of new drugs that would represent a therapeutic revolution such as that brought about by selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) or atypical antipsychotics. Although scientists are still a long way from understanding its true aetiology, the neurobiological concept of depression has evolved from receptor regulation disorder, to a neurodegenerative disorder with a hippocampal volume decrease with the controversial reduction in neurotrophins such as BDNF, to current hypotheses that consider depression to be an inflammatory and neuroprogressive process. As regards antidepressants, although researchers are still far from knowing their true mechanism of action, they have gone from monoaminergic hypotheses, in which serotonin was the main protagonist, to emphasising the anti-inflammatory action of some of these drugs, or the participation of p11 protein in their mechanism of action.

In the same way, according to the inflammatory hypothesis of depression, it has been proposed that some NSAIDS such as aspirin or drugs like simvastatin that have an anti-inflammatory action could be useful in some depressive patients. Despite the fact that there may be some data to support their clinical use, common sense and the evidence advise us to use already tested protocols and wait for the future to undertake new therapeutic strategies.

Keywords: Amygdala, anti-inflammatory drugs, antidepressants, aspirin, BDNF, cytokines, depression, hippocampus, inflammation, MDD, NDAIDS, simvastatin, statins

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