The authors of this paper do not have any commercial associations that might pose a conflict of interest in connection with this manuscript.
A relative resistance of T cells to dexamethasone in bipolar disorder
Article first published online: 27 NOV 2006
Volume 8, Issue 6, pages 740–750, December 2006
How to Cite
Knijff, E. M., Breunis, M. N., Van Geest, M. C., Kupka, R. W., Ruwhof, C., De Wit, H. J., Nolen, W. A. and Drexhage, H. A. (2006), A relative resistance of T cells to dexamethasone in bipolar disorder. Bipolar Disorders, 8: 740–750. doi: 10.1111/j.1399-5618.2006.00359.x
- Issue published online: 27 NOV 2006
- Article first published online: 27 NOV 2006
- Received 9 August 2005, revised and accepted for publication 31 March 2006
- bipolar disorder;
- T cells
Objective: A relative resistance of immune cells to steroids has been established in patients with major depression (MD). In this study, we investigated the in vitro responsiveness of T cells to dexamethasone (DEX) of patients with bipolar disorder (BD).
Methods: T cells of outpatients with DSM-IV BD (n = 54) and of healthy control subjects (HC; n = 29) were isolated, cultured and stimulated with phytohemagglutinin (PHA) for 72 h. The suppressive effect of graded concentrations of DEX (5 × 10−9–10−5 M) on PHA-induced CD25 (IL-2R) expression was measured by fluorescence-activated cell sorting (FACS) analysis. Data were correlated to the T-cell activation status in the peripheral blood of the same patients and to their diagnosis, current mood state, ultradian cycling pattern and current use of medication, including lithium.
Results: T cells of patients with BD were less sensitive to DEX-induced suppressive effects as compared with T cells of HC. These data were particularly evident at 10−7 M DEX (mean % suppression ± SEM BD: 18.9% ± 3.5 versus HC: 35.8% ± 4.7, p = 0.001). We found no correlations of this relative in vitro DEX resistance of T cells neither with the previously mentioned clinical characteristics nor with the actual activation status of the T cells in the BD patients.
Conclusion: A relative T-cell resistance to steroids, as has been observed in MD previously, may be a trait phenomenon of BD, independent of mood state.