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Clinical Trial Summary

This study is looking at genetic, biological, and environmental causes and how all three may work together to cause postpartum mood episodes. Participants will have psychiatric histories taken and will be monitored throughout pregnancy and during the postpartum period for the development of depressive or other mood episodes. Biological measures, including hormone levels, immunological measures, and growth factors will be collected. Environmental factors such as sleep deprivation and stress will also be measured. These factors will be considered in the setting of genetic and epigenetic data with the hope that investigators will ultimately be able to predict the onset of postpartum mood episodes in this vulnerable population.


Clinical Trial Description

Postpartum Depression (PPD) is a serious syndrome which resembles a major depressive episode and occurs in 10-20% of all mothers in the year following delivery. In addition, 20 - 30 % of women with Bipolar Disorder will experience postpartum psychosis (mania) and at least 20 % will experience a postpartum depression with some estimates as high as 65%. The postpartum time therefore represents a natural experiment that, in the setting of prospective monitoring, will allow the measurement of biological, genetic, and environmental factors that may impact the development of mood episodes.

Data was previously collected in "A Prospective Study of Postpartum Mood Episodes in Women with Affective disorders." Investigators followed 93 women with a history of a mood disorder (Major Depressive Disorder, Bipolar I, Bipolar II or Bipolar Not Otherwise Specified) through pregnancy and up to three months postpartum. This was a very ill sample and around 75% of the participants met Diagnostic and Statistical Manual (DSM)-IV criteria for a Major Depressive Episode either during pregnancy, postpartum or both. Of those that were well during the 3rd trimester (N=38), 40% became depressed within 4 weeks of delivery, despite the fact that 80% were taking psychiatric medications. Of those that developed Postpartum Depression, 53% had a family history of Postpartum Depression compared to 12% of those that did not develop Postpartum Depression, thus demonstrating a potential genetic basis for Postpartum Depression. Using this sample, investigators were able to identify epigenetic biomarkers that were predictive of Postpartum Depressive episodes.

Investigators now seek to replicate and extend investigators' previous findings by identifying and following a second sample of women with mood disorders through pregnancy and into the postpartum time period and, in addition, collect a sample of pregnant women who do not have a history of mood disorder as a control sample. These women will have psychiatric histories taken and will be monitored throughout pregnancy and during the postpartum period for the development of depressive or other mood episodes. In addition to clinical data, biological measures such as hormone levels, immunological measures and growth factors will be taken. Environmental factors such as sleep deprivation and stress will also be measured. These factors will be considered in the setting of genetic and epigenetic data with the hope that investigators will ultimately be able to predict the onset of postpartum mood episodes in this vulnerable population. An understanding of the biological basis of postpartum episodes will ultimately shed light on the vulnerability to Major Depressive Disorder and Bipolar Disorder in general ;


Study Design


Related Conditions & MeSH terms


NCT number NCT03615794
Study type Observational
Source Johns Hopkins University
Contact Jennifer Payne, MD
Phone 410-502-0050
Email jpayne5@jhmi.edu
Status Recruiting
Phase
Start date October 1, 2017
Completion date October 2022

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