Rainer Rupprecht

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The stress hormone-regulating hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis has been implicated in the causality as well as the treatment of depression. To investigate a possible association between genes regulating the HPA axis and response to antidepressants and susceptibility for depression, we genotyped single-nucleotide polymorphisms in eight of these(More)
Steroids influence neuronal function by binding to intracellular receptors that can act as transcription factors and regulate gene expression. In addition, some so-called 'neuroactive steroids' are potent modulators of an array of ligand-gated ion channels and of distinct G-protein coupled receptors via nongenomic mechanisms, and they can influence sleep(More)
OBJECTIVE There is evidence from animal studies that fluoxetine may enhance the concentrations of neuroactive steroids. Therefore, the authors investigated whether clinically effective treatment with antidepressants may alter the concentrations of neuroactive steroids in patients suffering from a major depressive episode. METHOD In the first study, eight(More)
The translocator protein (18 kDa) (TSPO) is localized primarily in the outer mitochondrial membrane of steroid-synthesizing cells, including those in the central and peripheral nervous system. One of its main functions is the transport of the substrate cholesterol into mitochondria, a prerequisite for steroid synthesis. TSPO expression may constitute a(More)
CONTEXT Brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) modulates hippocampal plasticity, which is believed to be altered in patients with major depression. OBJECTIVE To examine the effect of the BDNF Val66Met polymorphism on hippocampal and amygdala volumes in patients with major depression and in healthy control subjects. DESIGN Cross-sectional comparison(More)
Steroids influence neuronal function through binding to cognate intracellular receptors which may act as transcription factors in the regulation of gene expression. In addition, certain so-called neuroactive steroids modulate ligand-gated ion channels via non-genomic mechanisms. Especially distinct 3alpha-reduced metabolites of progesterone and(More)
Tryptophan hydroxylase (TPH), being the rate-limiting enzyme in the biosynthesis of serotonin plays a major role as candidate gene in several psychiatric disorders. Recently, a second TPH isoform (TPH2) was identified in mice, which was exclusively present in the brain. In a previous post-mortem study of our own group, we could demonstrate that TPH2 is also(More)
Disturbances in serotonergic neurotransmission system have been implicated in the etiology of mood disorders. As the importance of genetic factors is well established, genes encoding for proteins of the serotonergic pathway are important candidates to unravel the underlying genetic contribution. We examined two polymorphisms in the serotonin-2A-receptor(More)
The serotonergic system is involved in the pathophysiology of major depression as well as in the early central nervous system development and adult neuroplasticity. The aim of the study was to examine in 77 patients with major depression and 77 healthy controls the association between the triallelic polymorphism in the promoter region of the serotonin(More)
BACKGROUND There is preclinical and clinical evidence that plasma concentrations of 3 alpha-hydroxy-5 alpha-pregnan-20-one (3 alpha,5 alpha-tetrahydroprogesterone; 3 alpha,5 alpha-THP), a neuroactive steroid that is a positive allosteric modulator of the GABAA receptor, are altered in depression and normalize as a result of antidepressant treatment.(More)