The relationship between Toxoplasma gondii infection and mood disorders in the NHANES III
Published Date:Feb 10 2012
Source:Biol Psychiatry. 72(4):290-295.
Pubmed Central ID:PMC4750371
Funding:CC999999/Intramural CDC HHS/United States
Toxoplasma gondii (T. gondii) is a neurotropic protozoan parasite that causes persistent infection in humans. A substantial literature suggests that schizophrenia is associated with increased seroprevalence of T. gondii, but a possible link of the parasite with mood disorders has not been as thoroughly investigated.
We examined the association of Toxoplasma-specific IgG results with mood disorder outcomes in 7440 respondents from the third National Health and Nutrition Survey (NHANES III), which is a nationally representative sample of the U.S. noninstitutionalized civilian population. Regression models were adjusted for numerous potential confounders including tobacco smoking and C-reactive protein levels.
No statistically significant associations were found between T. gondii seroprevalence and a history of major depression (n=574; adjusted odds ratio, 0.8; 95% CI 0.5–1.2), severe major depression (n=515; adjusted odds ratio, 0.8; 95% CI, 0.6– 1.2), dysthymia (n=548; adjusted odds ratio, 1.1; 95% CI 0.7–1.8), or dysthymia with co-morbid major depression (n=242, adjusted odds ratio, 1.2; 95% CI 0.6–2.4), all p-values were >0.05, including analysis stratified by gender. However, there was a significant relationship between T. gondii seroprevalence and bipolar disorder type I for respondents in which both manic and major depression symptoms were reported (n=41; adjusted odds ratio, 2.4; 95% CI, 1.2–4.8; p<0.05).
In a population-based sample, T. gondii seroprevalence is not elevated in unipolar mood disorders but is higher in a subset of respondents with a history of bipolar disorder type 1.
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