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Elevated Plasma Concentrations of α1-Acid Glycoprotein, a Putative Endogenous Inhibitor of the Tritiated Imipramine Binding Site, in Depressed Patients

Charles B. Nemeroff, MD, PhD; K. Ranga R. Krishnan, MD; Dan G. Blazer, MD, PhD; David L. Knight; Dan Benjamin, MS; Laurence R. Meyerson, PhD
Arch Gen Psychiatry. 1990;47(4):337-340. doi:10.1001/archpsyc.1990.01810160037007.
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• The plasma concentration of α1-acid glycoprotein, a putative endogenous inhibitor of the site labeled by tritiated imipramine, was measured by a radial immunodiffusion assay in 36 normal human volunteers and 51 drug-free patients who fulfilled DSM-III criteria for major depression. The depressed patients exhibited a significant elevation in the plasma concentration (±SEM) of α1-acid glycoprotein (79.6±4 mg/dL) when compared with the age- and sex-matched controls (61.7 ±3 mg/dL). Fourteen of the 51 patients with major depression had plasma α1-acid glycoprotein concentrations that were higher than the highest values of the normal controls. There was no relationship between plasma α1-acid glycoprotein concentrations and sex or affinity of platelet tritiated imipramine binding of either the normal volunteers or the depressed patients. In the depressed patients, there was a significant positive correlation between plasma concentrations of α1-acid glycoprotein and postdexamethasone plasma cortisol concentrations, and two measures of depression severity, the Montgomery-Asberg Rating Scale for Depression and the Center for Epidemiologic Studies—Depression Scale, and a significant negative correlation with age. These data provide the first evidence of alterations of an endogenous inhibitor of the tritiated imipramine binding site/serotonin transporter in depressed patients.

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