Abstract Title:

Melatonin Augments the Effects of Fluoxetine on Depression-Like Behavior and Hippocampal BDNF-TrkB Signaling.

Abstract Source:

Neurosci Bull. 2017 Oct 31. Epub 2017 Oct 31. PMID: 29086908

Abstract Author(s):

Kun Li, Si Shen, Yu-Tian Ji, Xu-Yun Li, Li-San Zhang, Xiao-Dong Wang

Article Affiliation:

Kun Li


Depression is a debilitating psychiatric disorder with a huge socioeconomic burden, and its treatment relies on antidepressants including selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs). Recently, the melatonergic system that is closely associated with the serotonergic system has been implicated in the pathophysiology and treatment of depression. However, it remains unknown whether combined treatment with SSRI and melatonin has synergistic antidepressant effects. In this study, we applied a sub-chronic restraint stress paradigm, and evaluated the potential antidepressant effects of combined fluoxetine and melatonin in adult male mice. Sub-chronic restraint stress (6 h/day for 10 days) induced depression-like behavior as shown by deteriorated fur state, increased latency to groom in the splash test, and increased immobility time in the forced-swim test. Repeated administration of either fluoxetine or melatonin at 10 mg/kg during stress exposure failed to prevent depression-like phenotypes. However, combined treatment with fluoxetine and melatonin at the selected dose attenuated stress-induced behavioral abnormalities. Moreover, we found that the antidepressant effects of combined treatment were associated with the normalization of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF)-tropomyosin receptor kinase B (TrkB) signaling in the hippocampus, but not in the prefrontal cortex. Our findings suggest that combined fluoxetine and melatonin treatment exerts synergistic antidepressant effects possibly by restoring hippocampal BDNF-TrkB signaling.

Study Type : Animal Study

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