Psychiatry Section Meeting, March 1988

29/03/1988 in Royal College of Physicians of Ireland, 6, Kildare Street, Dublin 2

President : Dr. Una O’Donnell

A meeting of the Psychiatric Section of the Royal Academy of Medicine took place on Tuesday, 29th March, 1988. The President of the Psychiatric Section, Dr. Una O’Donnell, presided. Professor Keith Tipton, Professor of Biochemistry, Trinity College, Dublin presented a paper entitled “Recent Advances in Anti-Depressants”. Professor Tipton reviewed the biochemical synthetic and metabolic pathways for brain neuro-transmitters thought relevant in affective disorders. He reviewed the evidence in favour of the Mono Amine theory of┬ádepression as well as identifying some of the deficiencies of this theory. Professor Tipton then referred to his own interest in the enzyme Mono Amine Oxidase. Recent research has identified two sub-types, MAO A and MAO B. He outlined how it may be possible to identify clinically useful Mono Amine Oxidase inhibitors which may not cause the “Cheese Reaction”. He believes it may also be possible to develop MAOIs which focus on particular neurotransmitter pathways. MAOIs in current practice inhibit┬áthe enzyme irreversibly. Professor Tipton referred to work undertaken to identify reversible inhibitors of the enzyme MAO. These would be safer clinically. A very full and wide ranging discussion followed Professor Tipton’s presentation. This reflected interest in his talk. Dr. Una O’Donnell thanked Professor Tipton for his presentation, in particular because he communicated effectively on complex biochemical matters and did so with both humour and clarity. The well attended meeting was then brought to a close.