Trial of long-term ketamine for depression underway

A national NHMRC-backed trial will evaluate the controversial S8 drug ketamine as a long-term treatment for patients with severe depression.

Researchers at the University of NSW are to lead a multicentre randomised controlled trial that will evaluate the efficacy of a month of ketamine subcutaneous injections in 200 adults with depression who have not responded to conventional medications.

Psychiatrist Professor Colleen Loo (pictured), who is based at the Black Dog Institute in Sydney, says the study will build on the many small, proof-of-concept studies that have shown antidepressant efficacy of