Effect of epigallocatechin gallate supplementation in schizophrenia and bipolar disorder: an 8-week, randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study
Author: Jennifer M. Loftis, Clare J. Wilhelm, Marilyn Huckans
Objectives: Strategies that focus on the reduction of oxidative stress and inflammation may have therapeutic benefit for the treatment of schizophrenia. This clinical trial sought to determine, in a double-blind study, whether epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG), a green tea extract, is a useful adjunct to maintenance antipsychotic medication. Methods: Adults with schizophrenia, schizoaffective disorder or bipolar disorder who were maintained on antipsychotic and other psychotropic medications were randomized to supplemental EGCG or placebo. Study participants completed clinical assessments and blood draws to evaluate supplemental treatment effects on psychiatric symptoms and plasma inflammatory markers. Results: A total of 34 participants (17 EGCG, 17 placebo) were randomized and 25 participants (14 EGCG, 11 placebo) completed the study. Both treatment groups showed significant reductions in psychotic, depressive and anxiety symptoms from baseline to end of treatment. However, EGCG did not significantly affect psychiatric symptoms or inflammatory markers, as compared with placebo. Adverse effects were mild and comparable between groups. Conclusion: There was no signal for a therapeutic effect of the green tea extract EGCG on psychiatric symptoms in this placebo-controlled pilot study.