Decreased plasma BDNF levels of patients with somatization disorder

Nam In Kang, Jong Il Park, Yong Ku Kim, Jong Chul Yang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


Objective Brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), one of the most abundant and important neurotrophins, is known to be involved in the development, survival, maintenance, and plasticity of neurons in the nervous system. Some studies have suggested that BDNF may play a role in the pathophysiology of several psychiatric illnesses such as depression and schizophrenia. Similarly, it is likely that the alteration of BDNF may be associated with the neuro-modulation that contributes to the development of somatization disorder. Methods The purpose of this study was to determine whether there is an abnormality of plasma BDNF levels in patients with somatization disorder, and to analyze the nature of the alteration after pharmacotherapy using an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). Results The plasma BDNF levels of the patients with a somatization disorder were significantly lower compared with those of the control volunteers (83.61±89.97 pg/mL vs. 771.36±562.14 pg/mL); moreover, the plasma BDNF levels of those patients who received an antidepressant were significantly increased after the treatment (118.13±91.45 pg/mL vs. 72.92±88.21 pg/mL). Conclusion These results suggest that BDNF may play a role in the pathophysiology of somatization disorder.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)526-530
Number of pages5
JournalPsychiatry Investigation
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 2016 Sept
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This paper was supported by Fund of Biomedical Research Institute, Chonbuk National University Hospital.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2016 Korean Neuropsychiatric Association.


  • BDNF
  • Neurotrophin
  • Somatization disorder

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Biological Psychiatry


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