Inflammation, neurotrophism and oxidative stress and childhood psychopathology in a large community sample

G. R. Cunha, E. Asevedo, R. B. Mansur, A. Zugman, P. M. Pan, A. Gadelha, S. I. Belangero, L. B. Rizzo, R. Coelho, L. Stertz, H. Cogo-Moreira, R. Grassi-Oliveira, A. L. Teixeira, M. Kauer-Sant'Anna, J. J. Mari, E. C. Miguel, R. A. Bressan, E. Brietzke

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


Objective: To investigate the association between peripheral biomarkers and child psychopathology in a large community sample. Method: A total of 625 aged 6- to 13-year old subjects were recruited from a community school-based study. Psychopathology was assessed using the Child Behaviour Checklist (CBCL). Psychiatric diagnosis was evaluated using the Development and Well-Being Assessment. The following biomarkers were examined in peripheral blood: brain-derived neurotrophic factor, cytokines (IL-2, IL-4, IL-6, IL-10, IL-17, IFN-g, and TNF-α), chemokines (eotaxin/CCL11, IP-10, MCP-1), cytokine receptors (sTNFR1 and sTNFR2), and the oxidative stress marker TBARS. Results: We found significant associations between sTNFR2, eotaxin/CCL11 and CBCL total score, as well as with specific dimensions of psychopathology. There were different patterns of association between these biomarkers and psychological and behavioural symptoms in children with and without a mental disorder. TBARS, IL-6 and MCP-1 were more specific to some clusters of symptoms in children with a psychiatric diagnosis. Conclusion: Our data support the potential use of biomarkers, especially those involved in immune-inflammatory pathways, in investigating neurodevelopmental psychopathology. Their association with different dimensions of symptoms might be of useful when analyzing illness severity and clusters of symptoms within specific disorders.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)122-132
Number of pages11
JournalActa Psychiatrica Scandinavica
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 1 2016
Externally publishedYes


  • Adolescence
  • Biomarkers
  • Childhood
  • Mental disorders
  • Psychopathology

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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