Personalized Medicine in Anxiety Disorders: Its Possible Role in Prevention and Early Intervention

Poster A25, Thursday, October 20, 11:30 am - 1:00 pm, Le Baron

Giampaolo Perna1,2,3,4, Tatiana Torti1,4, Daniela Caldirola1; 1Hermanas Hospitalarias, 2University of Miami, 3Maastricht University, 4AIAMC

The central theme of personalized medicine is the premise that an individual’s unique physiology plays a central role in disease vulnerability and in response to specific therapies. Anxiety disorders are one of the most common mental disorders with a strong impact on patients’ quality of life. Up to 60% of patients do not respond to pharmacotherapy and/or psychotherapy and relapses rates are very high. Causes of treatment-resistance are reported in chronicity of illness, psychiatric comorbidity, severity of symptomatology, physical comorbidity, personality traits and molecular causes. Personalized medicine represents a way to come to the aid of these shortages. The ability to detect the first signs of anxiety psychopathology and the possibility to use genetic markers to identify vulnerability to anxiety disorders and to predict the response to drugs and/or psychotherapy could open the door to a more personalized treatment that might ensure a better and quicker response, reducing the probability of failures and lack of compliance due to disturbing side effects. In the recent years there are evidences of an association between some specific markers of panic vulnerability, i.e. CO2 hyperreactivity, and treatment response, as well as between genetic polymorphisms of serotonin transporter and the response to treatment with pharmacological compounds and with cognitive behavioral psychotherapy. The identification of genetic and physiologic markers and the evaluation of the interaction with clinical features might help to find tailored treatments able to ensure the best intervention possible for each patient at the early stage of the disorder before chronicity overcomes patients’ life.

Topic Area: Diagnosis and Phenomenology

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