. Scientific Frontline: Psychiatry
Showing posts with label Psychiatry. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Psychiatry. Show all posts

Wednesday, September 21, 2022

A new understanding of the neurobiology of impulsivity News

Photo Credit: Vitolda Klein

While not all impulsive behavior speaks of mental illness, a wide range of mental health disorders which often emerge in adolescence, including depression and substance abuse, have been linked to impulsivity. So, finding a way to identify and treat those who may be particularly vulnerable to impulsivity early in life is especially important.

A group of researchers, led by scholars at McGill University, have developed a genetically based score which could help identify, with a high degree of accuracy (greater than that of any impulsivity scores currently in use), the young children who are most at risk of impulsive behavior.

Their findings are especially compelling because the score they have developed was able to detect those at a higher risk of impulsivity within three ethnically diverse community samples of children, from a cohort of close to 6,000 children.

This discovery of a novel score for impulsivity in early life can inform prevention strategies and programs for children and adolescents who are at risk for psychiatric disorders. In addition, by describing the function of the gene networks comprising the score, the study can stimulate the development of new therapies in the future.

Tuesday, September 13, 2022

Study finds white children more likely to be overdiagnosed for ADHD

A new study by Professor Paul Morgan finds that white children are more likely to be overdiagnosed for ADHD than children of color.
Photo credit: Ben White on Unsplash

A new study led by Paul Morgan, Harry and Marion Eberly Faculty Fellow and professor of education (educational theory and policy) and demography, and published in the Journal of Learning Disabilities, examines which sociodemographic groups of children are more likely to be overdiagnosed and overtreated for ADHD. The researchers analyzed data from 1,070 U.S. elementary school children who had previously displayed above-average behavioral, academic or executive functioning the year before their initial ADHD diagnoses. The team said those children were considered unlikely to have ADHD by the researchers because children diagnosed and treated for ADHD should displaychronically inattentive, hyperactive or impulsive behaviors that impair their functioning and result in below-average academic or social development.

A problem with ADHD overdiagnosis, Morgan said, is that it contributes to stigma and skepticism toward those experiencing more serious impairments.

“It undermines a confidence in the disorder,” he said. “If anyone can be diagnosed with ADHD, then what is ADHD? For those who have significant impairments, they may experience greater skepticism about the condition. Mental health resources are already scarce, those with serious impairments could lose out.”

Thursday, September 8, 2022

New study finds subtle structural brain alterations in youth with suicidal behaviors

ENGIMA-STB aims to identify neurobiological variations associated with suicidal ideations and behaviors, to ultimately leverage information from brain structure, function, along with clinical and demographic factors, to predict the likelihood of a future suicidal attempt.
Image credit: USC Stevens INI

The ENIGMA Suicidal Thoughts and Behaviors (ENIGMA-STB) consortium gathered and analyzed neuroimaging data from 18 different studies worldwide to examine associations between brain structure and suicide attempt in young people with major depressive disorder.

Suicide is the second leading cause of death in the United States for young people from the age of 10 up to 33. Tragically, the number of suicide attempts among children and adolescents has continued to increase despite national and international prevention efforts. Collaborative research where specialists all over the world work together is needed to advance our understanding of the complex nature of suicidal thoughts and behaviors, and ultimately, to develop better interventions and preventions.

A new study by a global team of researchers including Neda Jahanshad, PhD, of the Keck School of Medicine of USC’s Mark and Mary Stevens Neuroimaging and Informatics Institute (Stevens INI), has revealed subtle alterations in the size of the brain’s prefrontal region in young people with mood disorders and suicidal thoughts and behaviors. The study was recently published in Molecular Psychiatry.

New knowledge about the link between infection during pregnancy and autism

Credit: Mart Production

Infections in pregnant women have been linked to increased risk of neuropsychiatric conditions, such as autism, in the child later in life. But it does not appear to be the infections themselves that cause autism, researchers from Karolinska Institutet show in a study published in The Lancet Psychiatry.

Our results can reassure future parents by showing that infections during pregnancy may not pose as much risk to the child's brain as previously thought, say HÃ¥kan Karlsson, researchers at Department of Neuroscience at Karolinska Institutet and the study's last author.

Previous studies have shown a link between infections of the future mother during pregnancy and increased risk of autism and intellectual disability in the child later in life.

But they have not been able to say whether it is really the infection of the mother that is the cause, or whether other factors are behind it. Researchers from Karolinska Institutet have now studied this more closely.

Featured Article

Adipose tissue as a culprit: How obesity leads to diabetes

A high-fat diet leads to obesity and the development of diabetes. Photo Credit:  Muffin Creatives A research team at the University of Basel...

Top Viewed Articles