Agomelatine in depression

Enrico Smeraldi, Dario Delmonte

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Introduction: Agomelatine is a relatively new antidepressant with a mechanism of action that is different from other antidepressants: it is a melatonergic agonist and a 5-HT2C antagonist. It is an effective treatment for depression, with relatively mild side effects. It may be a valuable pharmacological alternative in the clinical approach on depression. Areas covered: The literature about agomelatine has been comprehensively reviewed. Agomelatine's efficacy, safety and tolerability are reviewed based on the studies undertaken in patients with major depressive disorder (MDD) and bipolar disorder (BPD). Expert opinion: Agomelatine has shown an antidepressant effect in preclinical models, and the results of a large-scale clinical trial program, conducted in MDD, indicate both an antidepressant activity and a favorable tolerability profile. Agomelatine has no discontinuation syndrome, sexual discomfort is rare, and it is generally weigh neutral. The drug appears to be relatively safe in case of overdose. However, some cases of elevated hepatic transaminases are reported during treatment. As agomelatine has a mechanism of action that differs from other agents, it may represent a valuable additional treatment option in those patients who do not respond fully or who do not tolerate the side effects of other antidepressants.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)873-880
Number of pages8
JournalExpert Opinion on Drug Safety
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2013


  • Agomelatine
  • Antidepressant
  • Chronobiology
  • Circadian rhythms
  • Major depression
  • Melatonine
  • Mood disorder

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology (medical)


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