A Comparison of Cognitive and Dynamic Therapy for Depression in Community Settings

This study is ongoing, but not recruiting participants.
Information provided by (Responsible Party):
Mary Beth Gibbons, Ph.D., University of Pennsylvania
ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier:
First received: September 21, 2010
Last updated: May 27, 2015
Last verified: May 2015

The goal of this study is to compare supportive-expressive therapy, a type of psychodynamic psychotherapy, with cognitive therapy for the treatment of depression in community mental health consumers.

Hypothesized mediators of treatment will also be examined.

Condition Intervention Phase
Major Depressive Disorder
Behavioral: Cognitive Therapy
Behavioral: Supportive-Expressive Psychodynamic Therapy
Phase 3

Study Type: Interventional
Study Design: Allocation: Randomized
Intervention Model: Parallel Assignment
Masking: Open Label
Primary Purpose: Treatment
Official Title: A Comparison of Cognitive and Dynamic Therapy for MDD in Community Settings

Resource links provided by NLM:

Further study details as provided by University of Pennsylvania:

Primary Outcome Measures:
  • Hamilton Rating Scale for Depression (HAM-D) [ Time Frame: 6 months ] [ Designated as safety issue: No ]

Secondary Outcome Measures:
  • BASIS-24 [ Time Frame: 6 months ] [ Designated as safety issue: No ]
  • Beck Depression Inventory - II (BDI-II) [ Time Frame: 6 months ] [ Designated as safety issue: No ]
  • Medical Outcomes Study 36-Item Short Form (SF-36) [ Time Frame: 6 months ] [ Designated as safety issue: No ]
    Measure of general functionality

  • Quality of Life Inventory (QOLI) [ Time Frame: 6 months ] [ Designated as safety issue: No ]
  • Ways of Responding (WOR) [ Time Frame: 2 months ] [ Designated as safety issue: No ]
  • Dysfunctional Attitudes Scale (DAS) [ Time Frame: 2 months ] [ Designated as safety issue: No ]
  • Psychological Distance Scaling Task (PDST) [ Time Frame: 2 months ] [ Designated as safety issue: No ]
  • Self-Understanding of Interpersonal Patterns Scale-Revised (SUIP-R) [ Time Frame: 2 months ] [ Designated as safety issue: No ]

Estimated Enrollment: 230
Study Start Date: November 2010
Estimated Study Completion Date: September 2015
Estimated Primary Completion Date: September 2015 (Final data collection date for primary outcome measure)
Arms Assigned Interventions
Experimental: Cognitive Therapy Behavioral: Cognitive Therapy
16 sessions of cognitive therapy administered weekly by a community mental health therapist
Other Names:
  • Cognitive Behavioral Therapy
  • CBT
Experimental: Dynamic Therapy Behavioral: Supportive-Expressive Psychodynamic Therapy
16 sessions of supportive-expressive psychodynamic therapy administered weekly by a community mental health therapist
Other Names:
  • Psychodynamic Psychotherapy
  • Short Term Dynamic Therapy

Detailed Description:

The goal of this study is to conduct a randomized, comparative, non-inferiority clinical trial that tests the hypothesis that a widely used form of manualized dynamic psychotherapy (supportive-expressive psychodynamic therapy) is not inferior to cognitive therapy when implemented in community mental health settings for the treatment of major depressive disorder (MDD). The specific aims are (1) to conduct a randomized non-inferiority trial to compare supportive-expressive psychodynamic therapy and cognitive therapy for patients with MDD and (2) to assess the comparative effectiveness of supportive-expressive psychodynamic therapy and cognitive therapy on secondary measures of symptoms, patient functioning, and quality of life.

Patient mediators of outcome will also be examined through an additional grant awarded to Paul Crits-Christoph, Ph.D. This grant was funded by the National Institutes of Mental Health - RO1MH092363-01. This grant is entitled:"The mechanisms of cognitive and dynamic therapy in community settings."

Recruitment will occur solely through community mental health clinics in and around Philadelphia.


Ages Eligible for Study:   18 Years to 65 Years
Genders Eligible for Study:   Both
Accepts Healthy Volunteers:   No

Inclusion Criteria:

  • Confirmed diagnosis of major depressive disorder
  • Able to read at the 4th grade level or higher
  • Willingness to be randomized and participate in research

Exclusion Criteria:

  • Current or past diagnosis of schizophrenia, seizure disorder, bipolar disorder, psychotic features, or clinically significant organic pathology
  • Significant suicidal risk/ideation requiring immediate referral for more intensive treatment, or specific gesture in the last 6 months
  • Current substance abuse or dependence requiring immediate referral to substance abuse program
  • Acute medical problem requiring immediate inpatient treatment
  • Need for referral to a partial hospitalization program
  Contacts and Locations
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Please refer to this study by its ClinicalTrials.gov identifier: NCT01207271

United States, Pennsylvania
University of Pennsylvania
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States, 19104
Sponsors and Collaborators
University of Pennsylvania
Principal Investigator: Mary Beth Gibbons, Ph.D. University of Pennsylvania
Principal Investigator: Paul Crits-Christoph, Ph.D. University of Pennsylvania
  More Information

Responsible Party: Mary Beth Gibbons, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Psychology in Psychiatry, University of Pennsylvania
ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier: NCT01207271     History of Changes
Other Study ID Numbers: R01HS018440 
Study First Received: September 21, 2010
Last Updated: May 27, 2015
Health Authority: United States: Institutional Review Board
United States: Federal Government

Keywords provided by University of Pennsylvania:
community mental health

Additional relevant MeSH terms:
Depressive Disorder
Depressive Disorder, Major
Behavioral Symptoms
Mental Disorders
Mood Disorders

ClinicalTrials.gov processed this record on May 24, 2016