Digital Phenotyping in Bipolar Disorder: Which Integration with Clinical Endophenotypes and Biomarkers?

Int J Mol Sci. 2020 Oct 16;21(20):7684. doi: 10.3390/ijms21207684.


Bipolar disorder (BD) is a complex neurobiological disorder characterized by a pathologic mood swing. Digital phenotyping, defined as the 'moment-by-moment quantification of the individual-level human phenotype in its own environment', represents a new approach aimed at measuring the human behavior and may theoretically enhance clinicians' capability in early identification, diagnosis, and management of any mental health conditions, including BD. Moreover, a digital phenotyping approach may easily introduce and allow clinicians to perform a more personalized and patient-tailored diagnostic and therapeutic approach, in line with the framework of precision psychiatry. The aim of the present paper is to investigate the role of digital phenotyping in BD. Despite scarce literature published so far, extremely heterogeneous methodological strategies, and limitations, digital phenotyping may represent a grounding research and clinical field in BD, by owning the potentialities to quickly identify, diagnose, longitudinally monitor, and evaluating clinical response and remission to psychotropic drugs. Finally, digital phenotyping might potentially constitute a possible predictive marker for mood disorders.

Keywords: bipolar disorder; digital biomarkers; digital phenotyping; digital psychiatry; digital tool; phenotyping.

Publication types

  • Review