Bipolar Disorder Research Roundup: March 29, 2024


What is new in research on bipolar disorder?

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In this Research Roundup, we explore new studies on bipolar disorder and its connections to cPTSD, oxidative stress, suicidal ideation, and more.

Mood Stabilizers for the Treatment of Comorbid Bipolar Disorder and cPTSD

This study investigated the impact of comorbid complex posttraumatic stress disorder (cPTSD) on the response to mood stabilizers in individuals with bipolar disorder. Conducted on 344 participants with bipolar disorder, the study found that those with comorbid cPTSD showed a poorer response to mood stabilizers compared with those without cPTSD, as measured by the Alda scale.

“The results collected suggest the need for an add-on therapy focused on trauma in [patients with bipolar disorder],” the investigators concluded. “This could represent an area of future interest in clinical research, capable of leading to more precise and quicker diagnoses as well as suggesting better tailored and more effective treatments.”


Iazzolino AM, Valenza M, D'Angelo M, et al. How effective are mood stabilizers in treating bipolar patients comorbid with cPTSD? results from an observational studyInt J Bipolar Disord. 2024;12(1):9.

Hub Genes and Pathways and Their Links to Oxidative Stress in Bipolar Disorder

This study investigated the relationship between bipolar disorder and oxidative stress by identifying key hub genes involved in oxidative stress pathways. Through various analyses including differential expression, co-expression network analysis, and protein-protein interaction network analysis, 3 hub genes (TAC1, MAP2K1, and MAP2K4) were identified as potential biomarkers for bipolar disorder. Functional enrichment analysis revealed their involvement in neuronal signaling, oxidative phosphorylation, and metabolic pathways.

Additionally, receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curve analysis demonstrated the diagnostic value of these hub genes, which was further supported by quantitative reverse transcription-PCR results showing significant expression changes in patients with bipolar disorder compared with healthy controls. “Based on the GEO database,” the investigators concluded, “our study provides novel insights into the relationship between bipolar disorder and oxidative stress, offering promising therapeutic targets.”


Wu S, Hu H, Li Y, Ren Y. Exploring hub genes and crucial pathways linked to oxidative stress in bipolar disorder depressive episodes through bioinformatics analysisFront Psychiatry. 2024;15:1323527.

Connections Between Loneliness, Social Support, and Suicidal Ideation in Bipolar Disorder

The study investigated how perceived social connectedness relates to suicidal thoughts and behaviors in bipolar disorder. Results showed that participants with bipolar disorder reported higher loneliness and lower social support compared with healthy controls. Perceived social support was associated with lifetime suicide attempts, while loneliness was linked to current suicidal ideation in participants with bipolar disorder.

“Findings expand the evidence base supporting a relationship between perceived social connectedness and suicidal thoughts and behaviors in bipolar disorder,” the investigators concluded. “They suggest that this modifiable variable could be a fruitful treatment target for preventing suicidal thoughts and behaviors in bipolar disorder.”


Pike CK, Burdick KE, Millett C, Lipschitz JM. Perceived loneliness and social support in bipolar disorder: relation to suicidal ideation and attemptsInt J Bipolar Disord. 2024;12(1):8.

Note: This Research Roundup was prepared with the assistance of ChatGPT.

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