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We examined the relationship between platelet [3H]-imipramine binding and leukoencephalopathy as assessed by 1.5 Tesla Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) in 21 elderly depressed patients who satisfied DSM-III criteria for major depression. Both drug-free platelet [3H]-imipramine binding and brain MRI studies were obtained during the same episode of depression. Our findings show a significant inverse relationship between frequency of subcortical hyperintensity (SCH) and the number (Bmax of platelet [3H]-imipramine binding sites. Patients with Bmax less than 850 fmol/mg protein had significantly larger SCH compared with patients with a higher Bmax. These data provide further support to the potential use of platelet [3H]-imipramine binding studies and brain MR imaging as diagnostic adjuncts in geriatric depression and suggest, moreover, that these two biological markers may be linked in geriatric patients with depression.
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Received in revised form: July 31, 1990
Received: April 16, 1990
☆Supported in part by NIMH Grants MH-40159, MH-44716, and MH-17632 and the Thomas Research Fund.
© 1991 Published by Elsevier Inc.