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CBT-ADM (Personalized Indications for Cognitive Behavioural Therapy and Antidepressants in the Treatment of Major Depressive Disorder and Persistent Depressive Disorder) is a research study being conducted at Nova Scotia Health. The principal investigator (lead psychiatrist) is Dr. Rudolf Uher

Why is there a need for CBT-ADM?

Major Depressive Disorder (MDD) and Persistent Depressive Disorder (PDD) are common illnesses that are usually treated with antidepressant medications or psychological therapies such as Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT). However, it is often difficult to know which treatment will work best for which patient. Depression can be caused by many things such as changes in the way the body and brain work; it is most likely caused by a combination of several factors.

What is the aim of CBT-ADM?

We have discovered several clinical characteristics and blood tests that predict poor outcomes of treatment with antidepressants. It is likely that these same predictors may indicate a higher chance of responding to psychological therapy. This study aims to determine whether certain features including depression symptom profile, history of childhood abuse, inflammation, or genetic factors can meaningfully predict who will benefit from antidepressants and who will benefit from psychological therapy.

What does participation involve?

Interested participants will first be assessed to see if this project might be a good fit for them (see Who is eligible? below). Likely-eligible candidates will be asked to come in for a screening visit which will involve an assessment with a study clinician.


Following the screening visit, participants found eligible will receive best-evidence treatment in the form of an antidepressant or CBT for 16 weeks, with follow up assessments occurring every two weeks during that time. These assessments will vary in length and include clinical visits, self-report questionnaires, interviews and blood work. Some visits may be conducted remotely, but a minimum of 3 visits will be held in person at the DCRP in Halifax (in the Abbie J Lane building of the QEII, 5909 Veterans' Memorial Lane). Interested participants from outside the HRM should contact the DCRP for information on travel accommodations.

Who is eligible?

This study is recruiting people ages of 18 and above in Nova Scotia who are currently experiencing depression and not receiving treatment. Individuals who are currently pregnant will not be eligible. Certain additional criteria must be met, which will be assessed during a pre-screening conversation and at the screening visit.


How do I get in touch?

If you are interested in participating in CBT-ADM or would like to find out more, you can get in touch with the DCRP via our contact form, by phone (902 473 5313) or email ( To chat with us, you can send us a message on Facebook Messenger.


We also welcome referrals from GPs and community health services. Our referral form for use by healthcare professionals can be found here. You do not need to have a GP to be considered for this project.

CBT-ADM is part of the Canadian Biomarker Integration Network in Depression (CANBIND). You can read more about CANBIND here.

DCRP personnel for CBT-ADM

Nicole Stinson, Project Coordinator

(902) 473 5313


Jessica Toombs, Research Assistant

(902) 473 5313

Steven Jackson

(902) 473 5313


Rudolf Uher, MD, PhD, Principal Investigator

(902) 473 2585

Additional resources

You can read more about this project at the links below: (NCT02752542)

Nova Studies Connect 


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