An exploratory study on the association between serotonin and sleep breathing disorders

Sci Rep. 2023 Jul 21;13(1):11800. doi: 10.1038/s41598-023-38842-y.


This exploratory observational study aimed to evaluate whether the blood levels of serotonin and enzymes involved in serotonin synthesis are associated with sleep breathing parameters. A total of 105 patients were included in this study, who were subjected to single-night polysomnography with simultaneous audio-video recordings. Peripheral blood samples were collected to estimate the serum levels of serotonin, tryptophan hydroxylase 1 (TPH1), and aromatic l-amino acid decarboxylase (AADC). Results showed a negative correlation between blood serotonin levels, and oxygen desaturation index (ODI) (p = 0.027), central apnea (p = 0.044) and obstructive apnea (OA) (p = 0.032) scores. Blood TPH1 levels were negatively correlated with average (p = 0.003) and minimal saturation (p = 0.035) and positively correlated with apnea-hypopnea index (p = 0.010), OA (p = 0.049), and hypopnea index (p = 0.007) scores. A tendency to sleep-disordered breathing seemed to co-occur with lower blood serotonin and higher TPH1 levels.Clinical Trial Registration : , identifier NCT04214561.

Publication types

  • Observational Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Airway Obstruction*
  • Humans
  • Respiration
  • Serotonin
  • Sleep
  • Sleep Apnea Syndromes*
  • Sleep Apnea, Obstructive*
  • Sleep Wake Disorders*


  • Serotonin

Associated data