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International Consortium on the Genetics of Electroconvulsive Therapy and Severe Depressive Disorders (Gen-ECT-ic)

Journal article
Authors T. Soda
D. M. McLoughlin
S. R. Clark
L. Oltedal
U. Kessler
J. Haavik
C. Bousman
D. J. Smith
M. Bioque
C. C. Clements
C. Loo
F. Vila-Rodriguez
A. Minelli
B. J. Mickey
R. Milev
A. R. Docherty
J. L. Martin
E. D. Achtyes
V. Arolt
R. Redlich
U. Dannlowski
N. Cardoner
E. Clare
N. Craddock
A. Di Florio
M. Dmitrzak-Weglarz
L. Forty
K. Gordon-Smith
M. Husain
W. M. Ingram
L. Jones
I. Jones
M. Juruena
G. Kirov
Mikael Landén
D. J. Muller
A. Nordenskold
Erik Pålsson
M. Paul
A. Permoda
B. Pliszka
J. Rea
K. O. Schubert
J. A. Sonnen
V. Soria
W. Stageman
A. Takamiya
M. Urretavizacaya
S. Watson
M. Zavorotny
A. H. Young
E. Vieta
J. K. Rybakowski
M. Gennarelli
P. P. Zandi
P. F. Sullivan
B. T. Baune
Published in European Archives of Psychiatry and Clinical Neuroscience
Pages 12
ISSN 0940-1334
Publication year 2019
Published at Institute of Neuroscience and Physiology, Department of Psychiatry and Neurochemistry
Pages 12
Language en
Keywords Electroconvulsive therapy, GWAS, ECT, Severe depression, Major, depressive disorder, Bipolar disorder, Genomic, Cognition, major depression, remission rates, bipolar, predictors, guidelines, validity, scale, metaanalysis, mechanisms, management, Neurosciences & Neurology, Psychiatry
Subject categories Clinical Medicine


Recent genome-wide association studies have demonstrated that the genetic burden associated with depression correlates with depression severity. Therefore, conducting genetic studies of patients at the most severe end of the depressive disorder spectrum, those with treatment-resistant depression and who are prescribed electroconvulsive therapy (ECT), could lead to a better understanding of the genetic underpinnings of depression. Despite ECT being one of the most effective forms of treatment for severe depressive disorders, it is usually placed at the end of treatment algorithms of current guidelines. This is perhaps because ECT has controlled risk and logistical demands including use of general anaesthesia and muscle relaxants and side-effects such as short-term memory impairment. Better understanding of the genetics and biology of ECT response and of cognitive side-effects could lead to more personalized treatment decisions. To enhance the understanding of the genomics of severe depression and ECT response, researchers and ECT providers from around the world and from various depression or ECT networks, but not limited to, such as the Psychiatric Genomics Consortium, the Clinical Alliance and Research in ECT, and the National Network of Depression Centers have formed the Genetics of ECT International Consortium (Gen-ECT-ic). Gen-ECT-ic will organize the largest clinical and genetic collection to date to study the genomics of severe depressive disorders and response to ECT, aiming for 30,000 patients worldwide using a GWAS approach. At this stage it will be the largest genomic study on treatment response in depression. Retrospective data abstraction and prospective data collection will be facilitated by a uniform data collection approach that is flexible and will incorporate data from many clinical practices. Gen-ECT-ic invites all ECT providers and researchers to join its efforts.

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