Centre for Youth Mental Health - Research Publications

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    A randomised controlled trial of dietary improvement for adults with major depression (the "SMILES' trial) (vol 15, 23, 2017)
    Jacka, FN ; O'Neil, A ; Opie, R ; Itsiopoulos, C ; Cotton, S ; Mohebbi, M ; Castle, D ; Dash, S ; Mihalopoulos, C ; Chatterton, ML ; Brazionis, L ; Dean, OM ; Hodge, AM ; Berk, M (BMC, 2018-12-28)
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    The SMILES trial: an important first step
    Jacka, FN ; O'Neil, A ; Itsiopoulos, C ; Opie, R ; Cotton, S ; Mohebbi, M ; Castle, D ; Dash, S ; Mihalopoulos, C ; Chatterton, ML ; Brazionis, L ; Dean, OM ; Hodge, A ; Berk, M (BMC, 2018-12-28)
    The SMILES trial was the first intervention study to test dietary improvement as a treatment strategy for depression. Molendijk et al. propose that expectation bias and difficulties with blinding might account for the large effect size. While we acknowledge the issue of expectation bias in lifestyle intervention trials and indeed discuss this as a key limitation in our paper, we observed a strong correlation between dietary change and change in depression scores, which we argue is consistent with a causal effect and we believe unlikely to be an artefact of inadequate blinding. Since its publication, our results have been largely replicated and our recent economic evaluation of SMILES suggests that the benefits of our approach extend beyond depression. We argue that the SMILES trial should be considered an important, albeit preliminary, first step in the field of nutritional psychiatry research.
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    Aspirin: a review of its neurobiological properties and therapeutic potential for mental illness
    Berk, M ; Dean, O ; Drexhage, H ; McNeil, JJ ; Moylan, S ; O'Neil, A ; Davey, CG ; Sanna, L ; Maes, M (BMC, 2013-03-18)
    There is compelling evidence to support an aetiological role for inflammation, oxidative and nitrosative stress (O&NS), and mitochondrial dysfunction in the pathophysiology of major neuropsychiatric disorders, including depression, schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and Alzheimer's disease (AD). These may represent new pathways for therapy. Aspirin is a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug that is an irreversible inhibitor of both cyclooxygenase (COX)-1 and COX-2, It stimulates endogenous production of anti-inflammatory regulatory 'braking signals', including lipoxins, which dampen the inflammatory response and reduce levels of inflammatory biomarkers, including C-reactive protein, tumor necrosis factor-α and interleukin (IL)--6, but not negative immunoregulatory cytokines, such as IL-4 and IL-10. Aspirin can reduce oxidative stress and protect against oxidative damage. Early evidence suggests there are beneficial effects of aspirin in preclinical and clinical studies in mood disorders and schizophrenia, and epidemiological data suggests that high-dose aspirin is associated with a reduced risk of AD. Aspirin, one of the oldest agents in medicine, is a potential new therapy for a range of neuropsychiatric disorders, and may provide proof-of-principle support for the role of inflammation and O&NS in the pathophysiology of this diverse group of disorders.