The International Journal of Neuropsychopharmacology

Effect of treatment with bupropion on EEG sleep: relationship to antidepressant response

Geoffrey E. Ott a1, Uma Rao a2, Keh-Ming Lin a3, Lev Gertsik a4 and Russell E. Poland a1a3a4c1
a1 Interdepartmental Training Program for Neuroscience, UCLA, CA, USA
a2 Department of Psychiatry, UT Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas, TX, USA
a3 Department of Psychiatry, Harbor–UCLA Research and Education Institute, Los Angeles, CA, USA
a4 Department of Psychiatry, Cedars–Sinai Medical Center, Los Angeles, CA, USA

Article author query
ott ge   [PubMed][Google Scholar] 
rao u   [PubMed][Google Scholar] 
lin km   [PubMed][Google Scholar] 
gertsik l   [PubMed][Google Scholar] 
poland re   [PubMed][Google Scholar] 


The objective of this study was to assess whether treatment with sustained-release bupropion (Wellbutrin-SR®) produces alterations in electroencephalographic (EEG) sleep that are associated with clinical response to the drug. EEG sleep was measured in 20 patients with unipolar major depressive disorder before and after treatment with sustained-release bupropion. Each EEG sleep session consisted of two consecutive nights. Treatment with bupropion lasted for 8 wk. Compared to EEG sleep measures at baseline, treatment with bupropion significantly lengthened REM latency, increased REM activity and density during the first REM period, and increased total REM density. Differential response to treatment was associated with changes in REM activity and density, but not with REM latency. However, in contrast to many other antidepressants, REM sleep was not suppressed.

(Received May 5 2003)
(Reviewed August 17 2003)
(Revised January 3 2004)
(Accepted January 4 2004)

Key Words: Antidepressant; bupropion; depression; sleep.

c1 Dr R. E. Poland, Cedars–Sinai Medical Center, Department of Psychiatry, 8730 Alden Drive, Room E-135, Los Angeles, CA 90048, USA. Tel.: 310-423-3533 Fax: 310-423-0888 E-mail:

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