A probe in the connection between inflammation, cognition and suicide

Ricardo Cáceda, W. Sue T. Griffin, Pedro L. Delgado

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

20 Scopus citations


Background: Increased inflammation is linked to suicide risk. However, it is unclear whether increased inflammation drives suicidal crises or is a trait associated with lifetime suicidal behavior. Limited data exist on the sources of increased inflammation observed in suicidal patients and on its downstream effects. Aims: To examine factors associated with inflammation and with suicidal ideation severity in acutely suicidal depressed patients. Methods: Fifty-two adult depressed patients of both sexes hospitalized for severe suicidal ideation were characterized for suicidality, depression, anxiety, medical comorbidity, psychological and physical pain, impulsivity, verbal fluency, C-reactive protein (CRP) and interleukin (IL) 6. Two generalized linear models were performed with either CRP or suicidal ideation severity as dependent variables. Results: CRP levels were positively associated with age, body mass index (BMI), IL6, current physical pain and number of lifetime suicide attempts. Suicidal ideation severity was not significantly correlated with either CRP or IL6. Suicidal ideation severity was positively associated with female sex, presence of an anxiety disorder, current physical pain, number of lifetime suicide attempts and with delay discounting for medium and large losses. Conclusions: Increased inflammation is not associated with acute suicidal risk, but seems to represent a trait associated with lifetime suicidal behavior.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)482-488
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Psychopharmacology
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 1 2018


  • CRP
  • IL6
  • Suicide
  • impulsivity
  • inpatient
  • psychological pain

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Pharmacology (medical)


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