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Predictive values of multiple serum biomarkers for suicidal behaviours (SBs) have rarely been tested. This study sought to evaluate and develop a panel of multiple serum biomarkers for predicting SBs in outpatients receiving a 12-month pharmacotherapy programme for depressive disorders.
At baseline, 14 serum biomarkers and socio-demographic/clinical characteristics including previous suicidal attempt and present suicidal severity were evaluated in 1094 patients with depressive disorders without a bipolar diagnosis. Of these, 884 were followed for increased suicidal severity and fatal/non-fatal suicide attempt outcomes over a 12-month treatment period. Individual and combined effects of serum biomarkers on these two prospective SBs were estimated using logistic regression analysis after adjustment for relevant covariates.
Increased suicidal severity and fatal/non-fatal suicide attempt during the 12-month pharmacotherapy were present in 155 (17.5%) and 38 (4.3%) participants, respectively. Combined cortisol, total cholesterol, and folate serum biomarkers predicted fatal/non-fatal suicide attempt, and these with interleukin-1 beta and homocysteine additionally predicted increased suicidal severity, with clear gradients robust to adjustment (p values < 0.001).
Application of multiple serum biomarkers could considerably improve the predictability of SBs during the outpatient treatment of depressive disorders, potentially highlighting the need for more frequent monitoring and risk appraisal.
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