New PTSD biotypes enables improved tests, sheds light on divergent treatments efficacy

January 14, 2021

Researchers from the PTSD Systems Biology Consortium, led by scientists from the Walter Reed Army Institute of Research, have identified distinct biotypes for post-traumatic stress disorder, the first of their kind for any psychological disorder. "These biotypes can refine the development of screening tools and may explain the varying efficacy of PTSD treatments", said Dr. Marti Jett, leader of the consortium and WRAIR chief scientist.

Publishing their work in Molecular Psychiatry in a manuscript first authored by WRAIR's Dr. Ruoting Yang, researchers used blood tests from male, combat-exposed veterans across a three year period to identify two PTSD biotypes, G1--characterized by mild, inherent co-morbidities typical of PTSD--and G2--which includes more severe symptoms typical of PTSD and report more physical distress--with differing genetic markers and underlying mechanisms of disease. Building on
PTSD diagnosis has long been complicated by a reliance on self-reporting of patient symptoms, particularly the underreporting of signs of distress due to perceived stigma. "These findings help overcome that gap, using data that link objective molecular and physiological measures with PTSD biotypes as a screening tool for early indicators of distress and to avert full, chronic PTSD," explained Dr. Charles Marmar, chair of New York University Langone Health's Department of Psychiatry and clinical lead of the PTSD Systems Biology Consortium.

Additionally, one PTSD medication is currently FDA-approved for use in military personnel and is thought to be approximately 50% effective; clinical trials for other medications are further limited in efficacy. "These data set the stage for physicians to link treatments to specific biotypes, providing a blueprint for targeted therapeutics and better patient outcomes," said Dr. Kerry Ressler, consortium member and chief scientific officer of McLean Hospital.

Researchers with the PTSD Systems Biology Consortium, a network of government and academic laboratories, plan to continue their research to further identify and validate PTSD biotypes to develop better screening tools, including a test to biotype military personnel with probable PTSD symptoms in field settings away from clinicians. Additionally, future studies are planned to incorporate biotyping into clinical trials for PTSD therapeutics currently in development.
-end-
About the Walter Reed Army Institute of Research

Headquartered in Silver Spring, Maryland, the Walter Reed Army Institute of Research is the oldest and most mission-diverse biomedical research laboratory in the Department of Defense. WRAIR provides unique research capabilities and innovative solutions to a range of force health and readiness challenges currently facing U.S. Service Members, along with threats anticipated during future operations. With research units in the state of Washington, Africa, Asia and the Caucasus region, WRAIR houses three centers, the Center for Infectious Disease Research, the Center for Military Psychiatry and Neuroscience and the Center for Enabling Capabilities.

Walter Reed Army Institute of Research

Related PTSD Articles from Brightsurf:

'Brain fog' following COVID-19 recovery may indicate PTSD
A new report suggests that lingering ''brain fog'' and other neurological symptoms after COVID -19 recovery may be due to post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), an effect observed in past human coronavirus outbreaks such as SARS and MERS.

PTSD may double risk of dementia
People who have experienced post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) are up to twice as likely to develop dementia later in life, according to a new study by UCL researchers, published in the British Journal of Psychiatry.

How building features impact veterans with PTSD
The built environment, where someone lives (private) or works (public), influences a person's daily life and can help, or hinder, their mental health.

Work-related PTSD in nurses
A recent Journal of Clinical Nursing analysis of published studies examined the prevalence of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) among nurses and identified factors associated with work-related PTSD among nurses.

PTSD and moral injury linked to pregnancy complications
Elevated symptoms of PTSD and moral injury can lead to pregnancy complications, found a Veterans Affairs study of women military veterans.

Early treatment for PTSD after a disaster has lasting effects
In 1988, a 6.9 magnitude earthquake struck near the northern Armenian city of Spitak.

Cyberbullying Linked to Increased Depression and PTSD
Cyberbullying had the impact of amplifying symptoms of depression and post-traumatic stress disorder in young people who were inpatients at an adolescent psychiatric hospital, according to a new study published in the Journal of Clinical Psychiatry.

Psychedelic drugs could help treat PTSD
Clinical trials suggest treatment that involves psychedelics can be more effective than psychotherapy alone.

Which is more effective for treating PTSD: Medication, or psychotherapy?
A systematic review and meta-analysis led by Jeffrey Sonis, MD, MPH, of the University of North Carolina School of Medicine, finds there is insufficient evidence at present to answer that question.

Cannabis could help alleviate depression and suicidality among people with PTSD
Cannabis may be helping Canadians cope with the effects of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), new research suggests.

Read More: PTSD News and PTSD Current Events
Brightsurf.com is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.