Adjunctive Brexpiprazole as a Novel Effective Strategy for Treating Major Depressive Disorder: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis.


Journal Article (Review)

PURPOSE/BACKGROUND: Brexpiprazole was approved for adjunctive treatment of major depressive disorder (MDD) in 2015. Because only a small number of randomized controlled trials have investigated the use of brexpiprazole in MDD, we performed a meta-analysis. METHODS/PROCEDURES: We systematically searched literatures in PubMed, Cochrane Library database, EMBASE, Google Scholar, and up to January 2016. The primary efficacy measure was the mean change in total Montgomery-Åsberg Depression Rating Scale (MADRS) score from baseline. Secondary efficacy measures were the mean change in total Hamilton Rating Scale for Depression (17 items) score from baseline and the response (≥50% reduction in MADRS total score) and remission (MADRS total score ≤ 10 with ≥50% reduction) rates. FINDINGS/RESULTS: Four studies fulfilled the inclusion criteria and were included in the analysis. Brexpiprazole showed superior efficacy over placebo with effect sizes (mean differences) of -1.76 (95% confidence interval [CI], -2.45 to -1.07) for MADRS and -1.21 (95% CI, -1.71 to -0.72) for the 17-item Hamilton Rating Scale for Depression. The risk ratios for response and remission were 1.57 (95% CI, 1.29-1.91) and 1.55 (95% CI, 1.22-1.96), respectively. The incidences of discontinuation due to adverse events, akathisia, and weight increase were higher in the brexpiprazole group than in the placebo group, with risk ratios of 3.44 (95% CI, 1.52-7.80), 3.39 (95% CI, 2.08-5.51), and 4.36 (95% CI, 2.45-7.77), respectively, and the incidence of akathisia was related to the brexpiprazole dose. IMPLICATIONS/CONCLUSIONS: Although our results suggest that brexpiprazole could be an effective adjunctive agent for MDD, they should be cautiously translated into clinical practice because the meta-analysis was based on only a handful of randomized controlled trials.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Yoon, S; Jeon, SW; Ko, Y-H; Patkar, AA; Masand, PS; Pae, C-U; Han, C

Published Date

  • February 2017

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 37 / 1

Start / End Page

  • 46 - 53

PubMed ID

  • 27941419

Pubmed Central ID

  • 27941419

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1533-712X

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1097/JCP.0000000000000622


  • eng

Conference Location

  • United States