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The ENIGMA MDD Working group is an international collaboration currently including 18 research samples from 9 different countries worldwide. The primary aim of our ENIGMA-MDD Working Group is to identify imaging markers that robustly discriminate MDD patients from healthy controls using an individual participant data based meta-analysis (i.e. with carefully a priori planned, standardized image processing and statistical analysis protocols). For our first project our dataset included neuroimaging data from 1,808 MDD patients and 7,223 healthy individuals. The ENIGMA MDD working group is chaired by Drs. Lianne Schmaal and Dick Veltman.

A list of participating groups (updated March 2015) can be found here

Click here to access our members page.

We are happy to welcome new cohorts at any time!

If you would like more information and/or are interested in participating, please contact Dr. Lianne Schmaal


Current ENIGMA-MDD projects and the lead person on each one are as follows:

  • Subcortical volume analyses (Lianne Schmaal, VU University Medical Center, Amsterdam, The Netherlands) – This was the first prospective meta-analysis of the group, but new groups are encouraged to continue adding to the results, and additional analyses will be developed. Email:
  • Cortical structural analyses (Lianne Schmaal, VU University Medical Center, Amsterdam, The Netherlands) – As a follow-up to the subcortical volume meta-analysis we are now working on similar analyses but for cortical structures. Email:
  • Suicidal ideation (Miguel Renteria, QIMR Berghofer Medical Research Institute, Brisbane, Australia) – Investigation of neuroanatomical correlates of suicidality in major depression that can be detected using brain MRI (e.g. subcortical volumes, cortical thickness. Email:
  • Childhood maltreatment (Thomas Frodl, University of Dublin, Ireland) – Influence of childhood maltreatment on brain structure in MDD and controls. Email:
  • Normal variation with aging (Danai Dima, King’s College, London, UK). Email:
  • Subcortical Shape Analysis (Boris Gutman, University of Southern California, USA and Sean Hatton, University of Sydney, Australia). Email: and
  • Hippocampal Subfields (Philipp Saemann, Max Planck Institute of Psychiatry, Germany). Email:
  • MDD DTI project (Sinead Kelly, University of Southern California, USA and Laura van Velzen, VU University medical center, The Netherlands). Email: and
  • Developing a common metric for different severity of depressive symptoms measures (Matthias Rose and Felix Fischer, Charité Universitätsmedizin, Germany). Email:


Current MDD member sites are illustrated below:


ENIGMA on social media: