All conventional antidepressant drugs affect the neurotransmitters serotonin and norepinephrine. However, recent studies show that drugs affecting the messenger glutamate demonstrate a stronger and faster effect compared to conventional drugs. In a series of studies, we have demonstrated that the glutamate system is changed in patients with depression. These changes are believed to be the reason for the strong effect of glutamate drugs. In particular, Ketamine shows a strong antidepressant effect. Therefore, we started to use ketamine and esketamine for the treatment of severe depression using specific treatment guidelines. The aim of our research is to evaluate the efficacy and safety of this treatment. In addition, we use magnetic resonance spectroscopy to assess glutamate, glutamine and GABA in a community based-cohort study, and apply multimodal imaging on the glutamate system (glutamate, glutamine, mGluR5 PET) to elucidate the pathogenesis of bipolar depression and early phases of psychosis.


Universität Freiburg/Fribourg

Psychiatrie und Psychotherapie
Freiburger Netzwerk für Psychische Gesundheit

Chemin du Cardinal-Journet 3
1752 Villars-sur-Glâne