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Lamotrigine in Treatment Resistant Depression in Adolescents

The safety and scientific validity of this study is the responsibility of the study sponsor and investigators. Listing a study does not mean it has been evaluated by the U.S. Federal Government. Read our disclaimer for details. Identifier: NCT00284791
Recruitment Status : Terminated
First Posted : February 1, 2006
Last Update Posted : May 17, 2017
Information provided by:
Maine Medical Center

Tracking Information
First Submitted Date  ICMJE January 30, 2006
First Posted Date  ICMJE February 1, 2006
Last Update Posted Date May 17, 2017
Actual Study Start Date  ICMJE January 2006
Actual Primary Completion Date February 2007   (Final data collection date for primary outcome measure)
Current Primary Outcome Measures  ICMJE Not Provided
Original Primary Outcome Measures  ICMJE Not Provided
Change History
Current Secondary Outcome Measures  ICMJE Not Provided
Original Secondary Outcome Measures  ICMJE Not Provided
Current Other Pre-specified Outcome Measures Not Provided
Original Other Pre-specified Outcome Measures Not Provided
Descriptive Information
Brief Title  ICMJE Lamotrigine in Treatment Resistant Depression in Adolescents
Official Title  ICMJE Lamotrigine Use in Treatment Refractory Depression in Adolescents
Brief Summary

The primary hypothesis of this study is that in fluoxetine (Prozac)-resistant adolescents with Major Depressive Disorder (MDD), Lamotrigine plus fluoxetine will be safe and as effective as sertraline (Zoloft).

Our Primary Aim is to determine the efficacy and safety of Lamotrigine-augmentation of fluoxetine for treatment-resistant depression in adolescents.

Our Secondary Aims are to characterize the factors associated with treatment-resistance for adolescents with major depression. Also to assess the relationships in the families of adolescents with major depression as they enter treatment, and to track the differences in family relationships for adolescents who respond or do not respond. We postulate that tense, frustrated, irritable, and over-involved relationships constitute a risk factor for attenuated improvement or relapse.

Detailed Description

Mood disorders in youth, which include Major Depressive Disorder (MDD) and Bipolar Disorder (BPD), are highly prevalent, and are associated with significant mortality and morbidity. Many youths with major depression fail first-line treatments with psychotherapy and psychotropic medications. Lamotrigine (Lamictal®) recently gained approval by the FDA for maintenance treatment of bipolar disorder in adults. A few pilot studies have also shown promising results for lamotrigine (LTG) in treatment refractory mood disorders in both youth and adults, especially for depressive symptoms (Carandang et al., 2003; Frye et al., 2000).

For this proposed study, the modified design begins with adolescents with major depressive disorder who have not responded to a trial of a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor antidepressant (SSRI), fluoxetine, of adequate dose and duration, and randomizes them either to a second SSRI or to fluoxetine augmented by lamotrigine. Non-responders to 8 weeks of fluoxetine, on at least 40 mg/day, who have not had to discontinue fluoxetine because of adverse effects, would be randomized to: (A) continue fluoxetine with lamotrigine augmentation, for 8 weeks, as in the active arm of the original Stage 2, or (B) discontinue fluoxetine and begin a second SSRI, for 8 weeks. We will use sertraline as the second SSRI, because of the data supporting efficacy from the randomized placebo-controlled trial by Wagner, (JAMA, '03). Citalopram is also a possibility (Wagner, Am J. Psychiatry '04), but it has been in use for a shorter period of time than sertraline.

To maintain the blind, the B group will receive placebo augmentation.

The assessments and outcome measures would be the same as in the original study. We will consult with primary care offices to coach them through doing the initial, Stage 1, fluoxetine trial in their offices, and we will monitor the progress of adolescents started on fluoxetine in our clinic. Consent will be discussed only with those who are not responding, and treatment in the study will involve only the post-randomization treatment.


Mood disorders in youth are common and debilitating. Early-onset of mood disorders often indicates a severe illness, with high likelihood of recurrence into adulthood. For prepubertal children, point prevalence of MDD is 2%, and 6% in adolescents, while the lifetime prevalence for MDD in adolescents is 20% (Birmaher et al., 2002). The duration of a Major Depressive Episode in youth ranges from 3 to 9 months, with 10% lasting more than 2 years, 60-70% recurring in adulthood, and 20-40% developing Bipolar Disorder within 5 years (Weller and Weller, 2000). The prevalence of prepubertal bipolar disorder is estimated at 0.5%. Prevalence of bipolar disorder in adolescents is 1% (Lewinshon et al., 1995). Suicide is the third leading cause of death in the 15 - 24 year old age group (10.1 per 100,000) and the fifth leading cause in the 5 - 14 year old group (0.7 per 100,00), and is highly correlated with MDD and BPD (Pfeffer, 2002). In addition, mood disorders in youth can impair functioning, often characterized by poor school performance, impaired relationships, delinquent behavior, and substance abuse.

Study Type  ICMJE Interventional
Study Phase  ICMJE Not Applicable
Study Design  ICMJE Allocation: Randomized
Intervention Model: Parallel Assignment
Masking: Double
Primary Purpose: Treatment
Condition  ICMJE Adolescent Depression
Intervention  ICMJE
  • Drug: Lamotrigine (drug)
  • Drug: Fluoxetine (drug)
  • Drug: sertraline (drug)
Study Arms  ICMJE Not Provided
Publications * Not Provided

*   Includes publications given by the data provider as well as publications identified by Identifier (NCT Number) in Medline.
Recruitment Information
Recruitment Status  ICMJE Terminated
Enrollment  ICMJE
 (submitted: January¬†30,¬†2006)
Original Enrollment  ICMJE Same as current
Actual Study Completion Date  ICMJE February 2007
Actual Primary Completion Date February 2007   (Final data collection date for primary outcome measure)
Eligibility Criteria  ICMJE

Inclusion Criteria:

  1. Adolescents (13-17) diagnosed with a major depressive episode (MDE) (DSM-IV criteria) from either major depressive disorder (MDD) or bipolar disorder (BPD). BPD can present as a major depressive episode, with previous or subsequent cycling into a hypomanic, manic, or mixed episode. By definition, major depressive disorder MDD requires the presence of a major depressive episode, without cycling into a hypomanic, manic, or mixed episode.
  2. CDRS (Children's Depression Rating Scale) > 40.
  3. CGAS (Children's Global Assessment Scale) < 60.

    • Exclusion Criteria:

Adolescents who meet the following criteria will be excluded from the study:

  1. Prior medically serious suicide attempt, within 3 months of enrollment into study or a score of 3 on suicide questions within KSADS at initial visit or the side effect checklist on follow up visits regarding current state.
  2. Known or suspected mental retardation. For patients with known mental retardation, full scale IQ below 70 should be documented.
  3. Current significant physical illnesses (e.g. diabetes mellitus, asthma, cystic fibrosis, congenital heart defects, genetic disorders). Patients with seizure disorders taking anticonvulsants will be excluded (no concomitant anticonvulsants).
  4. Current drug or alcohol abuse. No active abuse will be permitted within two weeks of beginning the study trial (confirmed by urine testing in all cases of suspected abuse).
  5. Females who are sexually active and are unwilling or considered unable to use appropriate contraception.
  6. Use of benzodiazepines and other anxiolytics, antipsychotic medications, other antidepressants, stimulant medication, other mood stabilizers (e.g., lithium, valproate), and other sedative-hypnotics will not be permitted
Sex/Gender  ICMJE
Sexes Eligible for Study: All
Ages  ICMJE 13 Years to 18 Years   (Child, Adult)
Accepts Healthy Volunteers  ICMJE No
Contacts  ICMJE Contact information is only displayed when the study is recruiting subjects
Listed Location Countries  ICMJE United States
Removed Location Countries  
Administrative Information
NCT Number  ICMJE NCT00284791
Other Study ID Numbers  ICMJE MMC-2571
Has Data Monitoring Committee Not Provided
U.S. FDA-regulated Product Not Provided
IPD Sharing Statement  ICMJE Not Provided
Responsible Party Not Provided
Study Sponsor  ICMJE Maine Medical Center
Collaborators  ICMJE GlaxoSmithKline
Investigators  ICMJE
Principal Investigator: Douglas R Robbins, MD Maine Medical Center Psychiatry Department
Study Director: William McFarlane, MD Maine Medical Center, Center for Psychiatric Research
PRS Account Maine Medical Center
Verification Date May 2017

ICMJE     Data element required by the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors and the World Health Organization ICTRP