Molecular Psychotraumatology

Project: Psychoimmunological and psychoenergetic correlates of depression

Copyright © • Heiko Grandel

Project Team

Project Management
Prof. Dr. Iris-Tatjana Kolassa

Dr. Matthias Mack
M.Sc. Anja Gumpp
M.A. Nehir Mavioglu

Cooperation partners
Dr. Alexander Karabatsiakis

Prof. Dr. Iris-Tatjana Kolassa

Research questions and key findings

Chronic inflammatory processes and accelerated cell aging are important biological mechanisms that could explain the development of depression on a biological level and mediate the development of typical comorbid diseases. So far, our group observed alterations in telomere length and mitochondrial functioning of immune cells in depressed patients. In addition, changes in the N-glycan profile were found in women with depression.

External funding

  • 10/2020-09/2025 EU ERC Consolidator Grant “Major depression as a metabolic disorder: The role of oxygen homeostasis and mitochondrial bioenergetics in depression etiology and therapy”, Kolassa, I.-T.
  • 04/2009-03/2014 DFG Emmy Noether Junior Research Group within the DFG Research Unit Science of Social Stress on the topic of stress- and trauma-associated immunological changes and their effects on health

Selected Publications

  • Boeck, C., Salinas-Manrique, J., Calzia, E., Radermacher, P., von Arnim, C. A. F., Detlef, D., Kolassa, I.-T., Karabatsiakis, A. (2018). Targeting the association between telomere length and immune-cellular bioenergetics in female patients with major depressive disorder. Scientific Reports, e9419.
  • Boeck, C., Pfister, S., Bürkle, A., Vanhooren, V., Libert, C., Salinas-Manrique, J., Dietrich, D. E., Kolassa, I.-T., Karabatsiakis, A. (2018). Alterations of the serum N-glycan profile in female patients with Major Depressive Disorder. Journal of Affective Disorders, 234, 139-147.
  • Karabatsiakis, A., Kolassa, I.-T., Kolassa, S., Rudolph, K.-L., Dietrich, D. E. (2014). Telomere shortening in leukocyte subpopulations in depression. BMC Psychiatry, 14(1): e192.  
  • Karabatsiakis, A., Boeck, C., Manrique, J.S., Kolassa, S., Calzia, E., Dietrich, D.E., Kolassa, I.-T. (2014). Mitochondrial respiration in peripheral blood mononuclear cells correlates with depressive subsymptoms and severity of major depression. Translational Psychiatry, 4:e397.