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Journal Title

Frontiers in Physiology

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Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a mental health disorder that arises after experiencing or witnessing a traumatic event. Despite affecting around 7% of the population, there are currently no definitive biological signatures or biomarkers used in the diagnosis of PTSD. Thus, the search for clinically relevant and reproducible biomarkers has been a major focus of the field. With significant advances of large-scale multi-omic studies that include genomic, proteomic, and metabolomic data, promising findings have been made, but the field still has fallen short. Amongst the possible biomarkers examined, one area is often overlooked, understudied, or inappropriately investigated: the field of redox biology. Redox molecules are free radical and/or reactive species that are generated as a consequence of the necessity of electron movement for life. These reactive molecules, too, are essential for life, but in excess are denoted as "oxidative stress" and often associated with many diseases. The few studies that have examined redox biology parameters have often utilized outdated and nonspecific methods, as well as have reported confounding results, which has made it difficult to conclude the role for redox in PTSD. Herein, we provide a foundation of how redox biology may underlie diseases like PTSD, critically examine redox studies of PTSD, and provide future directions the field can implement to enhance standardization, reproducibility, and accuracy of redox assessments for the use of diagnosis, prognosis, and therapy of this debilitating mental health disorder.



Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.