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Keywords:

  • antidepressants;
  • depression;
  • late-life depression;
  • depressive disorder/genetics;
  • single nucleotide polymorphisms;
  • folate

Objective

The primary aims of this study were to (i) determine whether folate metabolism genetic polymorphisms predict age of onset and occurrence of late life depression; and (ii) determine whether folate metabolism genetic polymorphisms predict response to antidepressant medications in late-life depression.

Methods

This study used the Conte Center for the Neuroscience of Depression and the Neurocognitive Outcomes of Depression in the Elderly Study database, which includes individuals aged 60. The folate nutrition assessment was determined by the Block Food Frequency Questionnaire. Genotype was evaluated for 15 single nucleotide polymorphisms from 10 folate metabolism genes. Logistic regression models were used to examine genetic polymorphisms and folate estimates with association with depression age of onset and remission status.

Results

There were 304 Caucasians in the database, 106 of these were not depressed and 198 had a diagnosis of depression. There were no significant differences between remitters and non-remitters in age, sex or estimated folate intakes. There were no folate estimates or folate metabolism gene single nucleotide polymorphisms that significantly predicted age of onset of depression or occurrence of depression. Methionine synthase reductase (MTRR) A66G (rs1801394) was significantly associated with remission status (p = 0.0077) such that those with the AA genotype were 3.2 times as likely as those with the GG genotype to be in remission (p = 0.0020). Methylenetetrahydrofolate reductase A1298C (rs1801131) achieved a borderline significance for association with remission status (p = 0.0313).

Conclusion

The major finding from this study is that the MTRR A66G genotype predicts response to selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor antidepressants in late life depression. Copyright © 2012 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.