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Hair cortisol concentration in patients with anxiety disorders: exploration of cross-sectional and longitudinal relationships with symptom severity and inflammatory markers

Hair cortisol concentration in patients with anxiety disorders: exploration of cross-sectional and longitudinal relationships with symptom severity and inflammatory markers
Hair cortisol concentration in patients with anxiety disorders: exploration of cross-sectional and longitudinal relationships with symptom severity and inflammatory markers
Background. Hair cortisol concentration (HCC) can be used to periodically assess hypothalamo-pituitary-adrenal axis function, and appears correlated with prolonged exposure to stress.

Methods. Serial assessment (at Baseline, Week 6 and Week 12) of participants (n=35) with anxiety disorders by psychopathological rating scales, with assays of HCC and levels of peripheral anti- and pro- inflammatory cytokines. Patients underwent antidepressant treatment for an initial six weeks, followed by COX-2 inhibitor (celecoxib) augmentation or ‘treatment as usual’ for a further six weeks.
Results. At Baseline (n=35), HCC was elevated in patients with single-episode but not recurrent-episode anxiety disorders, mean IL-12p70 levels were low, and mean TNF-α levels were elevated. Following 6 weeks of antidepressant treatment (n=33), mean HCC was within the normal range but mean IL-2 level was low. Celecoxib augmentation (n=18) was associated with reduction in anxiety symptoms and normalisation of mean IL-2 levels.

Limitations. Small sample size. Not all participants were assessed at all time points.

Conclusion. Serial assessment of hair cortisol concentration is practicable in patients with anxiety disorders. These preliminary findings warrant further investigation in larger samples.
anxiety disorders, cortisol, HPA, hair, inflammation
0924-2708
1-7
Elnazer, Hesham Yousry
7e2eb3eb-0f00-455c-95b5-3c2e50f04b33
Lau, Laurie
2af8045d-6162-4939-aba7-28dd2f60f6a8
Amaro, Hugo
1151d701-7c46-4481-92d8-3fbd14e67610
Baldwin, David
1beaa192-0ef1-4914-897a-3a49fc2ed15e
Elnazer, Hesham Yousry
7e2eb3eb-0f00-455c-95b5-3c2e50f04b33
Lau, Laurie
2af8045d-6162-4939-aba7-28dd2f60f6a8
Amaro, Hugo
1151d701-7c46-4481-92d8-3fbd14e67610
Baldwin, David
1beaa192-0ef1-4914-897a-3a49fc2ed15e

Elnazer, Hesham Yousry, Lau, Laurie, Amaro, Hugo and Baldwin, David (2020) Hair cortisol concentration in patients with anxiety disorders: exploration of cross-sectional and longitudinal relationships with symptom severity and inflammatory markers. Acta Neuropsychiatrica, 1-7. (doi:10.1017/neu.2020.35).

Record type: Article

Abstract

Background. Hair cortisol concentration (HCC) can be used to periodically assess hypothalamo-pituitary-adrenal axis function, and appears correlated with prolonged exposure to stress.

Methods. Serial assessment (at Baseline, Week 6 and Week 12) of participants (n=35) with anxiety disorders by psychopathological rating scales, with assays of HCC and levels of peripheral anti- and pro- inflammatory cytokines. Patients underwent antidepressant treatment for an initial six weeks, followed by COX-2 inhibitor (celecoxib) augmentation or ‘treatment as usual’ for a further six weeks.
Results. At Baseline (n=35), HCC was elevated in patients with single-episode but not recurrent-episode anxiety disorders, mean IL-12p70 levels were low, and mean TNF-α levels were elevated. Following 6 weeks of antidepressant treatment (n=33), mean HCC was within the normal range but mean IL-2 level was low. Celecoxib augmentation (n=18) was associated with reduction in anxiety symptoms and normalisation of mean IL-2 levels.

Limitations. Small sample size. Not all participants were assessed at all time points.

Conclusion. Serial assessment of hair cortisol concentration is practicable in patients with anxiety disorders. These preliminary findings warrant further investigation in larger samples.

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Accepted/In Press date: 15 September 2020
e-pub ahead of print date: 15 October 2020
Keywords: anxiety disorders, cortisol, HPA, hair, inflammation

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 443971
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/443971
ISSN: 0924-2708
PURE UUID: 12fb45db-8cf8-4132-a2cc-ae8a25de1ebb
ORCID for David Baldwin: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0003-3343-0907

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Date deposited: 18 Sep 2020 16:31
Last modified: 26 Nov 2021 05:39

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Contributors

Author: Hesham Yousry Elnazer
Author: Laurie Lau
Author: Hugo Amaro
Author: David Baldwin ORCID iD

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