Year: 2007 Source: Archives of Suicide Research, v.11, no.2, (2007), p.187-192 SIEC No: 20070799

There is a need to find stable biomarkers for suicidal behavior and suicide prediction. Reduced homovanillic acid/5-hydroxyindolacetic acid (HVA/5-HIAA) ratios in cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) in depressed suicide attempters have been reported. Suicide intent is a predictor of repetition of attempts and suicide. In the present study we investigated the relationship of HVA/5-HIAA ratio to the scales rating suicide intent and depressive symptoms.

Fifteen consecutive medication-free male suicide attempters admitted to a psychiatric ward at the Karolinska Hospital and eight healthy male volunteers underwent lumbar puncture and had the CSF monoamine metabolite levels assayed. Patients were assessed with the Beck Suicide Intent Scale (SIS), the Montgomery Asberg Depression rating Scale (MADRS) and the Chapman Scale of Anhedonia.

Within the suicide attempter group, HVA/5-HIAA ratio was significantly associated with the Suicide Intent Scale (SIS), but not with the MADRS scale or the Chapman Scale of Anhedonia indicating that the HVA/5-HIAA ratio may be a biomarker of suicide intent.