DENIM Study: Depression and multiple sclerosis

Depression commonly occurs in chronic illnesses. Especially patients suffering from illnesses like multiple sclerosis, which are marked by an activation of the immune system, show an increased susceptibility to developing depression. Therefore, a biological cause and effect relationship between these symptoms seem to occur. However, it is widely unknown what kind of biological mechanisms are relevant.

In this clinical study we wanted to gain a better understanding of the relationship between changes in the immune system and the occurrence of depression in female and male patients suffering from Multiple Sclerosis. In order to do that we were looking for female and male patients diagnosed with relapsing remitting Multiple Sclerosis with and without depression as well as healthy controls.

The study entailed a one-time blood draw, a neurological examination as well as a clinical interview to determine the psychological well-being of the patient. No drugs were administered. The study examination took about 3.5 hours (one morning).

Principal investigators: Prof. Dr. Friedemann Paul (WG Clinical Neuroimmunology, NCRC) and Prof. Dr. Stefan Gold (Clinic for Psychiatry, CBF)

Course of the study: 11/2015 - 06/2017

Dissertation to the DENIM-Studie: https://edoc.hu-berlin.de/handle/18452/21286