Statins for the treatment of depression: a meta-analysis of randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trials

Salagre, Estela, Fernandes, Brisa S., Dodd, Seetal, Brownstein, Daniel J. and Berk, Michael 2016, Statins for the treatment of depression: a meta-analysis of randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trials, Journal of affective disorders, vol. 200, pp. 235-242, doi: 10.1016/j.jad.2016.04.047.

Attached Files
Name Description MIMEType Size Downloads

Title Statins for the treatment of depression: a meta-analysis of randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trials
Author(s) Salagre, Estela
Fernandes, Brisa S.ORCID iD for Fernandes, Brisa S.
Dodd, SeetalORCID iD for Dodd, Seetal
Brownstein, Daniel J.
Berk, MichaelORCID iD for Berk, Michael
Journal name Journal of affective disorders
Volume number 200
Start page 235
End page 242
Total pages 8
Publisher Elsevier
Place of publication Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Publication date 2016-08
ISSN 0165-0327
Keyword(s) statins
depressive symptoms
randomized controlled trial
systematic review
Science & Technology
Life Sciences & Biomedicine
Clinical Neurology
Neurosciences & Neurology
Summary BACKGROUND: In epidemiological studies, statins appear to benefit mood, and there are now some randomized controlled trials examining the efficacy of statins. However, the role of statins in depression remains uncertain. Thus the aim of this paper was to assess the effect of statins on depressive symptoms by performing a meta-analysis of all double-blind, randomized, placebo controlled clinical trials (RCT) conducted in subjects with depression. METHODS: A systematic search was executed using PubMed and in November 30th, 2015 for all double-blind, RCT of statins versus placebo in persons with depressive symptoms. Sixty-seven potential articles were identified through search of electronic databases, of those three met inclusion criteria and were included in the meta-analysis. The outcome measure was change in Hamilton Depression Rating Scale (HDRS) scores associated with statin use. A meta-analysis was conducted and standardized mean differences (SMDs) with 95% confidence intervals (CIs) were calculated. GRADE was used to assess study quality. RESULTS: The three articles included provided data on 165 participants with moderate to severe depression. Of these, 82 were randomized to statins as an adjuvant therapy to antidepressant treatment (i.e., citalopram or fluoxetine) and 83 to the placebo arm. All studies were double-blind RCTs, with a follow-up of 6-12 weeks. The statin agents evaluated were lovastatin, atorvastatin, and simvastatin. When compared to placebo, statins, as add-on to treatment as usual, largely improved depressive symptoms as assessed by the HDRS (SMD=-0.73, 95% IC -1.04 to -0.42, p<0.001, 3 between-group comparisons, n=165). No serious adverse effects were reported. CONCLUSIONS: Our results suggest that adjunctive treatment with statins could be useful for the treatment of depressive symptoms. Additional double-blind, randomised, placebo-controlled trials are necessary to settle the matter.
Language eng
DOI 10.1016/j.jad.2016.04.047
Field of Research 110319 Psychiatry (incl Psychotherapy)
Socio Economic Objective 920410 Mental Health
HERDC Research category C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
ERA Research output type C Journal article
Copyright notice ©2016, Elsevier B.V.
Persistent URL

Document type: Journal Article
Collections: Faculty of Health
School of Medicine
Connect to link resolver
Unless expressly stated otherwise, the copyright for items in DRO is owned by the author, with all rights reserved.

Version Filter Type
Citation counts: TR Web of Science Citation Count  Cited 66 times in TR Web of Science
Scopus Citation Count Cited 71 times in Scopus
Google Scholar Search Google Scholar
Access Statistics: 570 Abstract Views, 2 File Downloads  -  Detailed Statistics
Created: Fri, 27 May 2016, 18:59:47 EST

Every reasonable effort has been made to ensure that permission has been obtained for items included in DRO. If you believe that your rights have been infringed by this repository, please contact