Immunological abnormalities have been demonstrated in several psychiatric disorders. Predominantly, studies have focused on younger adults, and research on elderly psychiatric in-patients is scant. In this naturalistic study, we investigated changes in cytokine levels during the treatment of diagnostically unselected elderly psychiatric in-patients, and whether these changes could be related to clinical outcomes. Clinical variables, demographic data, lifestyle data, and blood samples, including 27 plasma cytokines representing a broad spectrum of inflammatory mediators, were collected from 81 patients, 60 years and older, at admission and discharge. A subgroup of 49 patients also completed a self-reported clinical, psychiatric status form, indicating their level of recovery during hospitalisation. Statistical analyses demonstrated that a broad range of cytokines fell during treatment, and the fall was associated with clinical improvement, irrespective of psychiatric and somatic diagnoses. Exploiting cytokines as biomarkers of clinical traits might to be of limited use in a general population of elderly psychiatric in-patients as the field stands now.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
- Endocrine and Autonomic Systems
- Psychiatry and Mental health
- Biological Psychiatry