Relationship Between Brain-Derived Neurotrofic Factor (Bdnf) and Sleep on Depression: A Critical Review

Bárbara C. Monteiro1, Suzana Monteiro1, Maristela Candida1, Nathalia Adler1, Flavia Paes1, Nuno Rocha2, 4, Antonio Egidio Nardi1, Eric Murillo-Rodriguez3, 4, Sergio Machado1, 4, 5, *
1 Laboratory of Panic and Respiration, Institute of Psychiatry, Federal University of Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
2 Polytechnic Institute of Porto, Health School, Porto, Portugal
3 Laboratorio de Neurociencias Moleculares e Integrativas, Escuela de Medicina, División Ciencias de la Salud, Universidad Anáhuac Mayab, Merida, Mexico
4 Intercontinental Neuroscience Research Group, Brazil.
5 Physical Activity Neuroscience Laboratory (LABNAF), Physical Activity Sciences Post-Graduate Program, Salgado de Oliveira University (UNIVERSO), Niterói, Brazil

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© 2017 Monteiro et al.

open-access license: This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International Public License (CC-BY 4.0), a copy of which is available at: This license permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

* Address correspondence to this author at the Laboratory of Panic and Respiration (LABPR), Institute of Psychiatry (IPUB), Federal University of Rio de Janeiro (UFRJ), Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Tel: +5538988042715; E-mail:


The Brain-Derived Neurotrofic Factor (BDNF) is one of the most important neurotrophins in the brain and it is suggested influences the activity of the serotonergic, noradrenergic and dopaminergic pathways. In the last few years, it has been hypothesized that BDNF level is related with depression and sleep. Several studies show that depressive subjects present low levels of BDNF in the brain. Poor sleep quality is also related with alterations in the BDNF concentration. Some authors argue that most of the cases show that impaired sleep quality increases the stress and, consequently, the vulnerability to depressive disorders, suggesting that there is a relationship between sleep, depression and BDNF levels.

Keywords: BDNF, Sleep, Depression, Antidepressants, Sleep quality, BDNF studies.