Objectives. Bipolar affective disorder is associated with neurotransmission changes, genetic factors, and brain anatomy abnormalities. The aim of the study was to compare superoxide anion generation (NADPH oxidase) by whole blood neutrophilic granulocytes in patients with bipolar affective disorder and in healthy controls.
Methods. Participants in the study were 42 patients with bipolar affective disorder (21 in the course of a depressive episode and 21 during a manic episode), and 21 healthy volunteers. All the patients were enrolled in the study on the basis of their medical history and psychiatric examination. NADPH oxidase activity was examined in granulocytes harvested from peripheral blood. Superoxide anion generation was evaluated using the Bellanite et al. method.
Results. Superoxide anion generation by whole blood granulocytes was significantly higher in bipolar affective patients than in healthy controls (13,9 ±4,4 in the depressive subgroup and 13,07 ±4,59 in manic patients vs. 9,79 ±2,05 in the controls, p<0.01). There were no differences between the depressive and manic subgroups.
Conclusion. Increased NADPH oxidase activity in blood neutrophilic granulocytes was found in bipolar affective disorder.