A rest-activity biomarker to predict response to SSRIs in major depressive disorder

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18 Scopus citations


Most adults with Major Depressive Disorder (MDD) will not experience a remission with the first antidepressant trial. No practical biomarkers presently exist to predict responsiveness to antidepressants. Herein we report pilot data for a rest-activity biomarker of antidepressant response.Fifty-eight medication-free adults with MDD underwent a week-long collection of actigraphic data before beginning a 9 week open label trial of fluoxetine, coupled with blinded randomized assignment to eszopiclone/placebo. Depression severity was repeatedly measured with the Hamilton Rating Scale for Depression (HRSD). Baseline actigraphic data was analyzed with functional data analysis to create smoothed 24-hcurves of activity. The time of the lowest point of activity (the bathyphase) was calculated for each patient, as well the mean difference between bedtime and the bathyphase (BBD). At the end of treatment, patients were characterized as treatment responders (50% reduction in HRSD) or non-responders, and receiver operating curves were calculated to find the optimal cut point of the BBD for prediction of treatment response.The best cut point for BBD was at 260.2min, resulting in an effect size of 1.45, and with a positive predictive value of 0.75 and a negative predictive value of 0.88.We conclude that actigraphically-determined measures of rest-activity patterns show promise as potential biomarker predictors of antidepressant response. However, this conclusion is based upon a small number of patients who received only one choice of antidepressant, for a single trial. Replication with a larger sample is needed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)19-22
Number of pages4
JournalJournal of Psychiatric Research
StatePublished - May 1 2015


  • Actigraphy
  • Bathyphase
  • Circadian
  • Depression
  • Fluoxetine
  • Predictor

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Biological Psychiatry


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