Plasma MHPG in Rapid Cyclers and Healthy Twins

David C. Jimerson, John I. Nurnberger, Robert M. Post, Elliot S. Gershon, Irwin J. Kopin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

67 Scopus citations


We measured plasma 3-methoxy-4-hydroxyphenylglycol (MHPG) in 13 pairs of healthy drug-free monozygotic twins. High concordance for both free and conjugated MHPG suggests that plasma levels of the metabolite may reflect a heritable biological trait. In two drug-free rapidly cycling patients studied longitudinally, plasma MHPG levels reflected alterations in psychiatric state; they were significantly higher during mania than during depression. Although largely reflecting peripheral sources, plasma MHPG level as a global index of noradrenergic function may complement urinary MHPG excretion as a probe for diagnostic subgroups or pharmacologic responsiveness in psychiatric research.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1287-1290
Number of pages4
JournalArchives of general psychiatry
Issue number11
StatePublished - Nov 1981
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Psychiatry and Mental health

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