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December 1976

Reduced Growth Hormone Responses to Amphetamine in "Endogenous" Depressive Patients: Studies in Normal, "Reactive" and "Endogenous" Depressive, Schizophrenic, and Chronic Alcoholic Subjects

Author Affiliations

From the Psychiatrische Klinik der Universitat Müncher, Munich, West Germany. Dr Langer is presently with the Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Bronx, NY.

Arch Gen Psychiatry. 1976;33(12):1471-1475. doi:10.1001/archpsyc.1976.01770120075007

• Several pharmacological stimulation tests of the pituitaryhypothalamic system have been used to investigate psychiatric disorders. This study introduces amphetamine sulfate as a stimulus for human growth hormone (HGH) release in various psychiatric patients.

Peak HGH release after a single intravenous administration of amphetamine sulfate, 0.1 mg/kg, was significantly lower in nine "endogenous" depressives (P =.01) and significantly higher in seven "reactive" depressives (P <.05) as compared to normal subjects, whereas peak HGH release in eight schizophrenics and six chronic alcoholics did not differ significantly from that in normal subjects.

Considering the pharmacological properties of amphetamine and the present concepts of neural regulation of HGH, our findings are compatible with a current hypothesis that altered brain monoaminergic activities represent one biological correlate of depressive disorders.

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