The role of base excision repair in major depressive disorder and bipolar disorder

Mehmet Utku Kucuker, Aysegul Ozerdem, Deniz Ceylan, Alejandra Cabello-Arreola, Ada M.C. Ho, Boney Joseph, Lauren M. Webb, Paul E. Croarkin, Mark A. Frye, Marin Veldic

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Background: In vivo and in vitro studies suggest that inflammation and oxidative damage may contribute to the pathogenesis of major depressive disorder (MDD) and bipolar disorder (BD). Imbalance between DNA damage and repair is an emerging research area examining pathophysiological mechanisms of these major mood disorders. This systematic review sought to review DNA repair enzymes, with emphasis on the base excision repair (BER), in mood disorders. Methods: We conducted a comprehensive literature search of Ovid MEDLINE® Epub Ahead of Print, Ovid MEDLINE® In-Process & Other Non-Indexed Citations, Ovid MEDLINE® Daily, EMBASE (1947), and PsycINFO for studies investigating the alterations in base excision repair in patients with MDD or BD. Results: A total of 1364 records were identified. 1352 records remained after duplicates were removed. 24 records were selected for full-text screening and a remaining 12 articles were included in the qualitative synthesis. SNPs (single nucleotide polymorphisms) of several BER genes have been shown to be associated with MDD and BD. However, it was difficult to draw conclusions from BER gene expression studies due to conflicting findings and the small number of studies. Limitations: All studies were correlational so it was not possible to draw conclusions regarding causality. Conclusion: Future studies comparing DNA repair during the manic or depressive episode to remission will give us a better insight regarding the role of DNA repair in mood disorders. These alterations might be utilized as diagnostic and prognostic biomarkers as well as measuring treatment response.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)288-300
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Affective Disorders
StatePublished - Jun 1 2022


  • Base excision repair
  • Bipolar disorder
  • DNA repair
  • Major depressive disorder
  • Oxidative damage

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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