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Changing the General Factor of Personality and the c-fos Gene Expression with Methylphenidate and Self-Regulation Therapy

  • Joan C. Micó (a1), Salvador Amigó (a2) and Antonio Caselles (a2)

Abstract

A deepening in the biological nature of the general factor of personality (GFP) is suggested: the activation level of the stress system is here represented by the gene expression of c-fos. The results of a single case experimental design are reported. A model of four coupled differential equations that explains the human personality dynamics as a consequence of a single stimulant drug intake has been fitted to psychological and biological experimental data. The stimulant-drug conditioning and its adaptation to the considered mathematical model is also studied for both kinds of measures. The dynamics of the c-fos expression presents a similar pattern to the dynamics of the psychological measures of personality assessed by the GFP-FAS (Five-Adjective Scale of the General Factor of Personality) as a consequence of a single dose of stimulant drug (methylphenidate). The model predicts similar dynamic patterns for both psychological and biological measures. This study proves that describing mathematically the dynamics of the effects of a stimulant drug as well as the effects of a conditioning method on psychological or subjective variables and on gene expression is possible. It verifies the existence of biological mechanisms underlying the dynamics of the General Factor of Personality (GFP).

Este artículo estudia la naturaleza dinámica del Factor General de Personalidad (FGP) en respuesta a una dosis única de metilfenidato a partir de un diseño experimental de caso único con replicación. Para medir el FGP, se emplean tanto medidas psicológicas (Escala de Cinco Adjetivos del Factor General de Personalidad; ECA-FGP), como un marcador biológico (propuesto como substrato biológico del FGP) que es la concentración del gen c-fos en los linfocitos de la sangre. También se estudia el condicionamiento de los efectos subjetivo y biológico del metilfenidato con una técnica de sugestión y condicionamiento, denominada terapia de auto-regulación. Por último, se propone un modelo matemático de cuatro ecuaciones diferenciales acopladas que explican la dinámica del FGP como consecuencia de una ingestión de droga estimulante y del condicionamiento de la droga, ajustadas a los datos experimentales psicológicos y biológicos. Los resultados muestran un patrón dinámico similar para ambas medidas psicológicas y biológicas del FGP en respuesta tanto a una dosis de metilfenidato como al condicionamiento con terapia de auto-regulación. Así, se evidencia que es posible la formulación matemática de la dinámica del FGP y sus correlatos biológicos, como el gen regulador c-fos, y su condicionamiento mediante la terapia de auto-regulación.

Copyright

Corresponding author

Correspondence concerning this article should be addressed to Antonio Caselles. Departament de Matemàtica Aplicada, Universitat de València. Dr. Moliner, 50, 46100 Burjassot - Valencia (Spain). Phone: +34-963543228. Fax: 34-963543922. E-mail: Antonio.Caselles@uv.es

References

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Changing the General Factor of Personality and the c-fos Gene Expression with Methylphenidate and Self-Regulation Therapy

  • Joan C. Micó (a1), Salvador Amigó (a2) and Antonio Caselles (a2)

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