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Biogenic amine and metabolite levels in depressed patients with high versus normal hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenocortical activity
Am J Psychiatry 1987;144:868-872.
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Abstract

The activity of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenocortical (HPA) axis is often high in depressive illness. The authors studied 132 depressed patients and 80 healthy control subjects. They report a significant direct association between HPA axis activity and adrenomedullary epinephrine secretion in depressed patients. They also found that depressed patients with high HPA activity tend to have lower CSF levels of 5-hydroxyindoleacetic acid, a serotonin metabolite, and modestly lower levels of 3-methoxy-4-hydroxyphenylglycol, a metabolite of epinephrine and norepinephrine, than patients with normal HPA activity. These findings provide potentially important leads for understanding interactions of biogenic amine systems with HPA axis function.

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