Try our beta test site
IMPORTANT: Listing of a study on this site does not reflect endorsement by the National Institutes of Health. Talk with a trusted healthcare professional before volunteering for a study. Read more...

DECIFER: Depression and Citalopram In First Episode Recovery (DECIFER)

This study is ongoing, but not recruiting participants.
National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH)
Information provided by (Responsible Party):
New York University School of Medicine Identifier:
First received: December 30, 2009
Last updated: January 5, 2017
Last verified: January 2017
This study seeks to examine the effectiveness of citalopram added to treatment with any oral or injectable second-generation antipsychotic plus standardized psychoeducation in first episode schizophrenia patients. Because depressive symptoms are common in first episode patients, we will test the hypothesis that adding the SSRI citalopram to a pre-established medication regimen will improve quality of life and decrease relapse and suicidality over the course of a 12-month trial.

Condition Intervention Phase
Schizophreniform Disorder
Drug: Citalopram
Drug: Placebo
Behavioral: Psychoeducation
Behavioral: Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)
Radiation: Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI)
Phase 4

Study Type: Interventional
Study Design: Allocation: Randomized
Intervention Model: Parallel Assignment
Masking: Double Blind (Participant, Care Provider, Investigator, Outcomes Assessor)
Primary Purpose: Treatment
Official Title: Citalopram in First Episode Schizophrenia

Resource links provided by NLM:

Further study details as provided by New York University School of Medicine:

Primary Outcome Measures:
  • Calgary Depression Scale for Schizophrenia (CDSS) [ Time Frame: Screening, Baseline, Weeks 1-8, 12, 16, 20, 24, 28, 32, 36, 40, 44, 48, 52 ]

Secondary Outcome Measures:
  • Scale for the Assessment of Negative Symptoms (SANS) [ Time Frame: Screening, Baseline, Weeks 4, 8, 12, 16, 20, 24, 28,32, 36, 40, 44, 48, 52 ]
  • Brief Psychiatric Rating Scale (BPRS) [ Time Frame: Baseline, Weeks 4, 8, 12, 16, 20, 24, 28, 32, 36, 40, 44, 48, 52 ]
  • InterSePT Scale for Suicidal Thinking (ISST) [ Time Frame: Screening, Baseline, Weeks 1-8,12, 16, 20, 24, 28, 32, 36, 40, 44, 48, 52 ]
  • Heinrich Quality of Life Scale (QOL) [ Time Frame: Baseline, Week 4, 8, 12, 16, 20, 24, 32, 40, 52 ]

Estimated Enrollment: 150
Study Start Date: December 2009
Estimated Study Completion Date: December 2020
Estimated Primary Completion Date: December 2017 (Final data collection date for primary outcome measure)
Arms Assigned Interventions
Experimental: Citalopram
Participants will receive a daily dose of citalopram, with flexible dosing as determined by clinician, for 12 months.
Drug: Citalopram
40 mg by mouth daily for 12 months. Dosing will start at 20mg daily and may be increased after a minimum of one week to the target dose of 40 mg daily. Dose decreases will be made in the presence of side effects. Allowed dose range will be 10 mg daily to 40 mg daily.
Other Names:
  • Celexa
  • Cipramil
Placebo Comparator: Placebo
Participants will receive a daily dose of placebo for 12 months.
Drug: Placebo
Placebo by mouth daily for 12 months.
Other Name: Sugar pill
Behavioral: Psychoeducation
16 sessions of weekly, individual psychoeducation and relapse prevention planning followed by 8 monthly sessions
Other Name: Therapy
Behavioral: Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)
Participants who exhibit symptoms of moderate suicidality at any point during the trial will be treated with 12 sessions of CBT, either once or twice weekly based on clinical judgment. Participants who continue to exceed suicidality criteria after 4 weeks of CBT will be dropped from double-blind treatment and may be prescribed openly an SSRI
Other Name: Therapy
Radiation: Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI)
3 1-hour sessions of fMRI brain scanning, assessed at baseline, and weeks 24 and 52
Other Name: Neuroimaging

  Show Detailed Description


Ages Eligible for Study:   16 Years to 40 Years   (Child, Adult)
Sexes Eligible for Study:   All
Accepts Healthy Volunteers:   No

Inclusion Criteria:

  • Male or female
  • Ages 16-40 years
  • Schizophrenia, any subtype or Schizophreniform disorder
  • Treated with any of the following second generation antipsychotics for at least 4 weeks and fewer than 16 weeks: risperidone, olanzapine, quetiapine, aripiprazole, ziprasidone, or paliperidone)
  • Willing to participate in psychoeducation
  • Sufficient proficiency in English to complete assessments

Exclusion Criteria:

  • Major depression by DSM-IV criteria
  • Clinical Global Assessment of Severity of Suicidality of 3 (moderate) or greater.
  • Calgary Depression Scale for Schizophrenia (CDRS) score of 7 or greater
  • Serious suicide attempt within three years or ANY suicide attempt for subjects age 16-25.
  • Current treatment with an MAOI or pimozide
  • Active alcohol or other substance abuse or dependence within three months
  • Unstable medical illness
  • History of SSRI intolerance
  • Pregnant or nursing
  • QTc ≥ 500 msec
  Contacts and Locations
Choosing to participate in a study is an important personal decision. Talk with your doctor and family members or friends about deciding to join a study. To learn more about this study, you or your doctor may contact the study research staff using the Contacts provided below. For general information, see Learn About Clinical Studies.

Please refer to this study by its identifier: NCT01041274

United States, New York
New York University Langone Medical Center/ Bellevue Hospital
New York, New York, United States, 10016
Sponsors and Collaborators
New York University School of Medicine
National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH)
Principal Investigator: Donald C Goff, MD New York University Langone Medical Center
  More Information

Responsible Party: New York University School of Medicine Identifier: NCT01041274     History of Changes
Other Study ID Numbers: 12-01965
1R01MH084900-01A1 ( US NIH Grant/Contract Award Number )
Study First Received: December 30, 2009
Last Updated: January 5, 2017

Keywords provided by New York University School of Medicine:
First episode
Cognitive behavioral therapy

Additional relevant MeSH terms:
Psychotic Disorders
Schizophrenia Spectrum and Other Psychotic Disorders
Mental Disorders
Serotonin Uptake Inhibitors
Neurotransmitter Uptake Inhibitors
Membrane Transport Modulators
Molecular Mechanisms of Pharmacological Action
Neurotransmitter Agents
Serotonin Agents
Physiological Effects of Drugs
Antidepressive Agents, Second-Generation
Antidepressive Agents
Psychotropic Drugs
Antiparkinson Agents
Anti-Dyskinesia Agents
Autonomic Agents
Peripheral Nervous System Agents
Muscarinic Antagonists
Cholinergic Antagonists
Cholinergic Agents processed this record on May 25, 2017