CSF GABA in depressed patients and normal controls

Alec Roy, Judith Dejong, Thomas Ferraro

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

68 Scopus citations


The inhibitory neurotransmitter gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) has been implicated in the pathophysiology of depression. Therefore, we examined cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) levels of GABA in depressed patients (N = 25) and normal controls (N = 20). There was no significant difference between the groups. However, among the depressed patients the subgroup of unipolar melancholic patients (N = 13) had significantly lower CSF levels of GABA than the rest of the depressed patients (N = 12). There was no significant difference for CSF levels of GABA between depressed patients who were (N = 14) or were not (N = 11) Cortisol non-suppressors. It was of interest that among the controls there was a significant negative correlation between CSF levels of GABA and CSF levels of norepinephrine.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)613-618
Number of pages6
JournalPsychological Medicine
Issue number3
StatePublished - 1991
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Applied Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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