The mothers, Omega-3 and mental health study

University of Michigan, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Division of Maternal-Fetal Medicine, Ann Arbor, Michigan, USA.
BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth (Impact Factor: 2.19). 06/2011; 11(1):46. DOI: 10.1186/1471-2393-11-46
Source: PubMed


Major depressive disorder (MDD) during pregnancy and postpartum depression are associated with significant maternal and neonatal morbidity. While antidepressants are readily used in pregnancy, studies have raised concerns regarding neurobehavioral outcomes in exposed infants. Omega-3 fatty acid supplementation, most frequently from fish oil, has emerged as a possible treatment or prevention strategy for MDD in non-pregnant individuals, and may have beneficial effects in pregnant women. Although published observational studies in the psychiatric literature suggest that maternal docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) deficiency may lead to the development of MDD in pregnancy and postpartum, there are more intervention trials suggesting clinical benefit for supplementation with eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) in MDD.
The Mothers, Omega-3 and Mental Health study is a double blind, placebo-controlled, randomized controlled trial to assess whether omega-3 fatty acid supplementation may prevent antenatal and postpartum depressive symptoms among pregnant women at risk for depression. We plan to recruit 126 pregnant women at less than 20 weeks gestation from prenatal clinics at two health systems in Ann Arbor, Michigan and the surrounding communities. We will follow them prospectively over the course of their pregnancies and up to 6 weeks postpartum. Enrolled participants will be randomized to one of three groups: a) EPA-rich fish oil supplement (1060 mg EPA plus 274 mg DHA) b) DHA-rich fish oil supplement (900 mg DHA plus 180 mg EPA; or c) a placebo. The primary outcome for this study is the Beck Depression Inventory (BDI) score at 6 weeks postpartum. We will need to randomize 126 women to have 80% power to detect a 50% reduction in participants' mean BDI scores with EPA or DHA supplementation compared with placebo. We will also gather information on secondary outcome measures which will include: omega-3 fatty acid concentrations in maternal plasma and cord blood, pro-inflammatory cytokine levels (IL-1β, IL-6, and TNF-α) in maternal and cord blood, need for and dosage of antidepressant medications, and obstetrical outcomes. Analyses will be by intent to treat.
This study compares the relative effectiveness of DHA and EPA at preventing depressive symptoms among pregnant women at risk.
Clinical trial registration number: NCT00711971.

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Available from: Delia M Vázquez, Sep 30, 2015
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    ABSTRACT: A meta-analysis of 21 studies suggests the mean prevalence rate for depression across the antenatal period is 10.7%, ranging from 7.4% in the first trimester to a high of 12.8% in the second trimester. Due to maternal treatment preferences and potential concerns about fetal and infant health outcomes, diverse non-pharmacological treatment options are needed. To assess the effect of interventions other than pharmacological, psychosocial, or psychological interventions compared with usual antepartum care in the treatment of antenatal depression. We searched the Cochrane Pregnancy and Childbirth Group's Trials Register (31 January 2013), scanned secondary references and contacted experts in the field to identify other published or unpublished trials. All published and unpublished randomised controlled trials of acceptable quality evaluating non-pharmacological/psychosocial/psychological interventions to treat antenatal depression. Both review authors participated in the evaluation of methodological quality and data extraction. Results are presented using risk ratio (RR) for categorical data and mean difference (MD) for continuous data. Six trials were included involving 402 women from the United States, Switzerland, and Taiwan. For most comparisons a single trial contributed data and there were few statistically significant differences between control and intervention groups.In a trial with 38 women maternal massage compared with non-specific acupuncture (control group) did not significantly decrease the number of women with clinical depression or depressive symptomatology immediately post-treatment (risk ratio (RR) 0.80, 95% confidence interval (CI) 0.25 to 2.53; mean difference (MD) -2.30, 95% CI -6.51 to 1.91 respectively). In another trial with 88 women there was no difference in treatment response or depression remission rates in women receiving maternal massage compared with those receiving non-specific acupuncture (RR 1.33, 95% CI 0.82 to 2.18; RR 1.14, 95% CI 0.59 to 2.19 respectively).In a trial with 35 women acupuncture specifically treating symptoms of depression, compared with non-specific acupuncture, did not significantly decrease the number of women with clinical depression or depressive symptomatology immediately post-treatment (RR 0.47, 95% CI 0.11 to 2.13; MD -3.00, 95% CI -8.10 to 2.10). However, women who received depression-specific acupuncture were more likely to respond to treatment compared with those receiving non-specific acupuncture (RR 1.68, 95% CI 1.06 to 2.66).In a trial with 149 women, maternal massage by a woman's significant other, compared with standard care, significantly decreased the number of women with depressive symptomatology immediately post-treatment (MD -6.70, 95% CI -9.77 to -3.63). Further, women receiving bright light therapy had a significantly greater change in their mean depression scores over the five weeks of treatment than those receiving a dim light placebo (one trial, n = 27; MD -4.80, 95% CI -8.39 to -1.21). However, they were not more likely to have a treatment response or experience a higher remission rate (RR 1.79, 95% CI 0.90 to 3.56; RR 1.89, 95% CI 0.81 to 4.42).Lastly, two trials examined the treatment effect of omega-3 oils. Women receiving omega-3 had a significantly lower mean depression score following eight weeks of treatment than those receiving a placebo (one trial, n = 33; MD -4.70, 95% CI -7.82 to -1.58). Conversely, in a smaller trial (21 women) there was no significant difference in the change in mean depression scores for women receiving omega-3 and those receiving a placebo (MD 0.36, 95% CI -0.17 to 0.89), and women who received omega-3 were no more likely to respond to treatment (RR 2.26, 95% CI 0.78 to 6.49) or have higher remission rates (RR 2.12, 95% CI 0.51 to 8.84). Women in the placebo group were just as likely to report a side effect as those in the omega-3 group (RR 1.12, 95% CI 0.56 to 2.27). The evidence is inconclusive to allow us to make any recommendations for depression-specific acupuncture, maternal massage, bright light therapy, and omega-3 fatty acids for the treatment of antenatal depression. The included trials were too small with non-generalisable samples, to make any recommendations.
    Cochrane database of systematic reviews (Online) 01/2013; 31(7). DOI:10.1002/14651858.CD006795.pub3 · 6.03 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Maternal deficiency of the omega-3 fatty acid, docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), has been associated with perinatal depression, but there is evidence that supplementation with eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) may be more effective than DHA in treating depressive symptoms. This trial tested the relative effects of EPA- and DHA-rich fish oils on prevention of depressive symptoms among pregnant women at an increased risk of depression. We enrolled 126 pregnant women at risk for depression (Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale score 9-19 or a history of depression) in early pregnancy and randomly assigned them to receive EPA-rich fish oil (1060 mg EPA plus 274 mg DHA), DHA-rich fish oil (900 mg DHA plus 180 mg EPA), or soy oil placebo. Subjects completed the Beck Depression Inventory (BDI) and Mini-International Neuropsychiatric Interview at enrollment, 26-28 weeks, 34-36 weeks, and at 6-8 weeks' postpartum. Serum fatty acids were analyzed at entry and at 34-36 weeks' gestation. One hundred eighteen women completed the trial. There were no differences between groups in BDI scores or other depression endpoints at any of the 3 time points after supplementation. The EPA- and DHA-rich fish oil groups exhibited significantly increased postsupplementation concentrations of serum EPA and serum DHA respectively. Serum DHA- concentrations at 34-36 weeks were inversely related to BDI scores in late pregnancy. EPA-rich fish oil and DHA-rich fish oil supplementation did not prevent depressive symptoms during pregnancy or postpartum.
    American journal of obstetrics and gynecology 04/2013; 208(4):313.e1-9. DOI:10.1016/j.ajog.2013.01.038 · 4.70 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Fetal dysregulation of T helper cell pathways may predispose to allergy, as high cord blood T helper 2/T helper 1 ratios have been shown to precede development of allergic diseases. We aimed to determine whether prenatal eicosapentaenoic acid and docosahexaenoic acid supplementation reduces T helper 2 to T helper 1-associated chemokine ratios. We also explored the effect of mode of delivery on T helper 2/T helper 1 ratios. We conducted a secondary analysis of a randomized placebo controlled trial initially performed to assess the effects of docosahexaenoic acid or eicosapentaenoic acid supplementation on pregnancy-related depressive symptoms among 126 participants. Cord plasma specimens from 98 newborns were assayed for chemokines associated with T helper 2 (thymus and activation-regulated chemokine [CCL17], macrophage-derived chemokine [CCL22], eotaxin [CCL 11]) and T helper 1 (interferon-inducible protein-10 [CXCL 10]) by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay and Multiplex immunoassays. Ratios of log-transformed chemokines macrophage-derived chemokine/interferon-inducible protein-10 and thymus and activation-regulated chemokine/interferon-inducible protein-10 were compared between groups by analyses of variance. Multiple linear regression was performed to examine associations between treatments and chemokine ratios, adjusting for covariates. After adjusting for gestational age at delivery, birthweight, and mode of delivery, both omega-3 supplementation groups were associated with lower macrophage-derived chemokine/interferon-inducible protein-10 ratios than placebo (eicosapentaenoic acid: coefficient -1.8; 95% confidence interval [CI], -3.6 to -0.05; P = .04; docosahexaenoic acid: -2.0; 95% CI, -3.9 to -0.07; P = .04). Similar associations were found for thymus and activation-regulated chemokine/interferon-inducible protein-10 (eicosapentaenoic acid: -1.5; 95% CI, -3.0 to 0.06; P = .06; docosahexaenoic acid -2.2; 95% CI, -3.8 to -0.52; P = .01). Cesarean delivery was associated with higher macrophage-derived chemokine/interferon-inducible protein-10 (1.6; 95% CI, 0.01-3.3; P = .049) and thymus and activation-regulated chemokine/interferon-inducible protein-10 (1.5; 95% CI, 0.1-2.9; P = .042) ratios than vaginal delivery. Prenatal supplementation with eicosapentaenoic acid and docosahexaenoic acid resulted in decreased cord blood T helper 2/T helper 1 chemokine ratios. Cesarean delivery was associated with a pronounced T helper 2 deviation at birth.
    American journal of obstetrics and gynecology 04/2013; 208(4):316.e1-6. DOI:10.1016/j.ajog.2013.01.024 · 4.70 Impact Factor
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