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BP Disorder Linked with Higher Triglyceride Levels

Bipolar Disord; ePub 2018 Feb 26; Wulsin, et al

Recent-onset medication-free bipolar disorder is associated with higher triglyceride levels, according to a recent study. These findings are suggestive of early metabolic dysregulation prior to long-term psychotropic medication exposure. Therefore, lower omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acid (PUFA) levels in individuals with bipolar I disorder represent a potential therapeutic target for additional investigation. Cardiometabolic risk assessments were compared in individuals with bipolar I disorder experiencing a first manic or mixed episode or an early depressive episode (n=117) and healthy subjects (n=56). Patients were medication-free at assessment and had no or limited exposure to mood-stabilizer or antipsychotic medications prior to the current admission. Researchers found:

  • Following adjustment for demographic variables (ie, age, gender, and parental education), significantly higher fasting triglyceride levels were observed in the bipolar group compared to the healthy group (121.7 mg/dL vs 87.0 mg/dL).
  • There were no clear trends for other metabolic indicators, including blood pressure, body mass index, and fasting glucose.
  • 19% of the bipolar group and 6% of the healthy group met the criteria for metabolic syndrome.
  • The omega-3 index was lower in the bipolar group (3.4% vs 3.9%).

Wulsin LR, Blom TJ, Durling M, et al. Cardiometabolic risks and omega-3 index in recent-onset bipolar I disorder. [Published online ahead of print February 26, 2018]. Bipolar Disord. doi:10.1111/bdi.12633.