OBJECTIVE:Immunologic abnormalities have been found in bipolar disorder and acute mania.
However, there have been fewer studies of patients with acute bipolar
METHOD:Blood samples were obtained from individuals with acute bipolar depression,
acute mania, and controls. These samples were evaluated for antibodies
to human herpesviruses, gliadin, Toxoplasma gondii, and endogenous
retroviruses as well as for C-reactive protein (CRP) and pentraxin-3
using immunoassay methods. Linear regression models were used to compare
the levels of the markers controlling for demographic and clinical
variables. A subset of the bipolar depressed group was evaluated at a
RESULTS:The sample consisted of 82 individuals with acute bipolar depression, 147
with acute mania, and 280 controls. The levels of CRP and IgG antibodies
to an endogenous retrovirus, Mason-Pfizer monkey virus (MPMV), were
significantly elevated in the bipolar depressed group. Levels of
pentraxin-3 were reduced in both psychiatric groups. An evaluation of 32
individuals 6 months after hospitalization for bipolar depression
showed a significant decrease in the levels of MPMV antibodies, but not a
change in the other markers.
CONCLUSION:Individuals with acute bipolar depression show immune alterations. Some of the
alterations are similar to those found in acute mania.