Chapter 2. Pharmacological Treatment of Major Depressive Disorder: A Review

  1. Helen Herrman3,
  2. Mario Maj4 and
  3. Norman Sartorius5
  1. George I. Papakostas1,
  2. Per Bech2 and
  3. Maurizio Fava1

Published Online: 10 AUG 2009

DOI: 10.1002/9780470745892.ch2

Depressive Disorders, Third Edition

Depressive Disorders, Third Edition

How to Cite

Papakostas, G. I., Bech, P. and Fava, M. (2009) Pharmacological Treatment of Major Depressive Disorder: A Review, in Depressive Disorders, Third Edition (eds H. Herrman, M. Maj and N. Sartorius), John Wiley & Sons, Ltd, Chichester, UK. doi: 10.1002/9780470745892.ch2

Editor Information

  1. 3

    University of Melbourne, Australia

  2. 4

    University of Naples, Italy

  3. 5

    University of Geneva, Switzerland

Author Information

  1. 1

    Department of Psychiatry, Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts, USA

  2. 2

    Psychiatric Research Unit, Frederiksborg General Hospital, Hillerød, Denmark

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 10 AUG 2009
  2. Published Print: 7 AUG 2009

Book Series:

  1. World Psychiatric Association Evidence and Experience in Psychiatry Series

Book Series Editors:

  1. Helen Herrman

Series Editor Information

  1. WPA Secretary for Publications, University of Melbourne, Australia

ISBN Information

Print ISBN: 9780470987209

Online ISBN: 9780470745892



  • pharmacological treatment of major depressive disorder;
  • agents with single monoaminergic mechanism of action;
  • tricyclic antidepressants (TCAs);
  • serotonin and norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors (SNRIs);
  • alpha-2 adrenergic receptor and 5HT2 serotonergic receptor antagonists;
  • norepinephrine dopamine reuptake inhibitors (NDRIs);
  • antidepressants - well-evaluated drugs;
  • antidepressant continuation and maintenance;
  • genetic influences on drug response


This chapter contains sections titled:

  • Introduction

  • Agents with a Single Monoaminergic Mechanism of Action

  • Agents with a Dual Monoaminergic Mechanism of Action

  • Agents with a Triple Monoaminergic Mechanism of Action

  • Summary

  • References