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Research Letter
September 2016

Association of Systemic Inflammation With Risk of Completed Suicide in the General Population

Author Affiliations
  • 1Department of Epidemiology and Public Health, University College London, London, England
  • 2Department of Public Health and Primary Care, University of Cambridge, Cambridge, England
  • 3Charles Perkins Centre and Prevention Research Collaboration, Sydney School of Public Health, University of Sydney, Sydney, Australia
JAMA Psychiatry. 2016;73(9):993-995. doi:10.1001/jamapsychiatry.2016.1805

There is a growing prima facie case for inflammation being associated with suicide. In cohort studies,1 elevated levels of inflammatory markers have been linked to the future occurrence of depression, a known risk factor for suicide. In psychiatric patients, inflammation is positively associated with the intensity of self-reported suicidal ideation,2 and those who commit suicide have higher cytokine levels post mortem relative to control patients.3 Furthermore, individuals with asthma, a condition characterized by inflammation, experience higher rates of suicide mortality than their nonatopic counterparts.4

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