Aim: To assess serum Hepatocyte Growth Factor (HGF) levels in individuals with depression and to test the hypothesis that there is a relationship between severity of depression and HGF concentration.
Subjects and methods: Serum from 26 clinically depressed individuals and 19 controls were tested for serum HGF using ELISAs. Correlation was established between HGF concentration and disease severity.
Results: Depressed individuals had significantly lower serum levels of HGF compared to controls (P < 0.0001). HGF concentration correlated with overall depressive behavior (P = 0.03) and specifically depression (P = 0.02), but not anxiety (P = 0.36).
Discussion: These results suggest an association between HGF serum levels and clinically depressed individuals and demonstrate a correlation between severity of depression and HGF levels. Further studies of the predictive strength of HGF as a biomarker for depression may be warranted.
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