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Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(9), 1966; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15091966

Do Progestin-Only Contraceptives Contribute to the Risk of Developing Depression as Implied by Beta-Arrestin 1 Levels in Leukocytes? A Pilot Study

Department of Neuroscience & Pharmacology, Meharry Medical College, 1005 Dr. D. B. Todd Jr. Blvd, Nashville, TN 37208, USA
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Received: 29 June 2018 / Revised: 13 August 2018 / Accepted: 7 September 2018 / Published: 9 September 2018
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Abstract

We reported previously that reduction in beta-arrestin 1 (β-AR 1) protein levels in peripheral blood mononuclear leukocytes (PBMC) significantly correlated with the severity of depressive symptoms in reproductive women. In this pilot study, we used β-AR 1 protein levels in PBMC as a marker for developing depressive symptoms and the Hamilton Depression Rating Scale (HAM-D) scores to assess potential mood-related side effects of oral contraceptive use for routine birth control among women. We evaluated 29 women in this study. We enrolled the participants in three groups: Estrogen-progestin combination-oral contraceptives (COC, n = 10), progestin-only contraceptives (POC, n = 12), and non-hormonal or no contraceptives (NC, n = 7). We determined the β-AR 1 protein levels in PBMCs by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). We found that women in the POC group had significantly higher HAM-D scores compared to those in the COC (p < 0.0004) and NC (p < 0.004). The levels of β-AR 1 protein were significantly attenuated in women in the POC group compared to women in the NC group (p = 0.03). Our findings suggest that the use of POC is a potential risk factor for developing depressive symptoms. View Full-Text
Keywords: beta-arrestin 1; depression; combination-oral contraceptives; progestin-only contraceptives; mononuclear leukocytes; women beta-arrestin 1; depression; combination-oral contraceptives; progestin-only contraceptives; mononuclear leukocytes; women
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Smith, K.; Nayyar, S.; Rana, T.; Archibong, A.E.; Looney, K.R.; Nayyar, T. Do Progestin-Only Contraceptives Contribute to the Risk of Developing Depression as Implied by Beta-Arrestin 1 Levels in Leukocytes? A Pilot Study. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15, 1966.

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