"I had to wait 110 years to become famous. I wanted to enjoy it as long as possible.", Jeanne Louise Calment (1875-1997). This review summarizes current knowledge of the effects of antidepressant drugs in elderly patients (double-blind placebo (n=27) or active comparator-controlled clinical trials (n=21) indexed in Pubmed in depressed patients aged ≥60) and in aged mice (≥9 months) and middle-aged rats (≥14 months) on depression-related symptoms and cognitive performances. Finally, other potential therapeutic targets for treating depression-related disorders in elderly patients are also addressed (neurogenesis, GABAB receptor, 5-HT4 receptor, mTOR signaling). Overall, the very few published preclinical studies (n=12 in total) in middle-aged and aged rodents seem to suggest that selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) may be less effective than tricyclic antidepressant drugs (TCAs) in ameliorating depression-like behavior and cognitive functions. On the other hand, results from clinical trials suggest that there is not a marked difference in efficacy and safety profiles of current marketed classes of antidepressant drugs.
Keywords: Aging; Cognition; Human; Major depressive disorders; Neurogenesis; Rodent.
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