Peripheral inflammatory markers associated with brain-volume reduction in patients with bipolar i disorder

Shang Ying Tsai, Martha Sajatovic, Jung Lung Hsu, Kuo Hsuan Chung, Pao Huan Chen, Yu Jui Huang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)


Background: Neuroinflammation and brain structural abnormalities are found in bipolar disorder (BD). Elevated levels of cytokines and chemokines have been detected in the serum and cerebrospinal fluid of patients with BD. This study investigated the association between peripheral inflammatory markers and brain subregion volumes in BD patients. Methods: Euthymic patients with bipolar I disorder (BD-I) aged 20 to 45 years underwent whole-brain magnetic resonance imaging. Plasma levels of monocyte chemoattractant protein-1, chitinase-3-like protein 1 (also known as YKL-40), fractalkine, soluble tumor necrosis factor receptor-1 (sTNF-R1), interleukin-1β, and transforming growth factor-β1 were measured on the day of neuroimaging. Clinical data were obtained from medical records and interviewing patients and reliable others. Results: We recruited 31 patients with a mean age of 29.5 years. In multivariate regression analysis, plasma level YKL-40, a chemokine, was the most common inflammatory marker among these measurements displaying significantly negative association with the volume of various brain subareas across the frontal, temporal, and parietal lobes. Higher YKL-40 and sTNF-R1 levels were both significantly associated with lower volumes of the left anterior cingulum, left frontal lobe, right superior temporal gyrus and supramarginal gyrus. A greater number of total lifetime mood episodes was also associated with smaller volumes of the right caudate nucleus and bilateral frontal lobes. Conclusions: The volume of brain regions known to be relevant to BD-I may be diminished in relation to higher plasma level of YKL-40, sTNF-R1, and more lifetime mood episodes. Macrophage and macrophage-like cells may be involved in brain volume reduction among BD-I patients.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)191-200
Number of pages10
JournalActa Neuropsychiatrica
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2022


  • bipolar I disorder
  • brain volume
  • Chemokine
  • chitinase-3-like protein 1
  • sTNF-R1
  • YKL-40

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Biological Psychiatry


Dive into the research topics of 'Peripheral inflammatory markers associated with brain-volume reduction in patients with bipolar i disorder'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this