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In this prospective study of mental health, we examine the influence of three interrelated traits — perceived stress, rumination, and daytime sleepiness — and their association with symptoms of anxiety and depression in early adolescence. Given the known associations between these traits, an important objective is to determine the extent to which they may independently predict anxiety/depression symptoms. Twin pairs from the Queensland Twin Adolescent Brain (QTAB) project were assessed on two occasions (N = 211 pairs aged 9−14 years at baseline and 152 pairs aged 10−16 years at follow-up). Linear regression models and quantitative genetic modeling were used to analyze the data. Prospectively, perceived stress, rumination, and daytime sleepiness accounted for 8−11% of the variation in later anxiety/depression; familial influences contributed strongly to these associations. However, only perceived stress significantly predicted change in anxiety/depression, accounting for 3% of variance at follow-up after adjusting for anxiety/depression at baseline, although it did not do so independently of rumination and daytime sleepiness. Bidirectional effects were found between all traits over time. These findings suggest an underlying architecture that is shared, to some degree, by all traits, while the literature points to hypothalamic–pituitary–adrenal (HPA) axis and/or circadian systems as potential sources of overlapping influence and possible avenues for intervention.
The hippocampus is a complex brain structure with key roles in cognitive and emotional processing and with subregion abnormalities associated with a range of disorders and psychopathologies. Here we combine data from two large independent young adult twin/sibling cohorts to obtain the most accurate estimates to date of genetic covariation between hippocampal subfield volumes and the hippocampus as a single volume. The combined sample included 2148 individuals, comprising 1073 individuals from 627 families (mean age = 22.3 years) from the Queensland Twin IMaging (QTIM) Study, and 1075 individuals from 454 families (mean age = 28.8 years) from the Human Connectome Project (HCP). Hippocampal subfields were segmented using FreeSurfer version 6.0 (CA4 and dentate gyrus were phenotypically and genetically indistinguishable and were summed to a single volume). Multivariate twin modeling was conducted in OpenMx to decompose variance into genetic and environmental sources. Bivariate analyses of hippocampal formation and each subfield volume showed that 10%–72% of subfield genetic variance was independent of the hippocampal formation, with greatest specificity found for the smaller volumes; for example, CA2/3 with 42% of genetic variance being independent of the hippocampus; fissure (63%); fimbria (72%); hippocampus-amygdala transition area (41%); parasubiculum (62%). In terms of genetic influence, whole hippocampal volume is a good proxy for the largest hippocampal subfields, but a poor substitute for the smaller subfields. Additive genetic sources accounted for 49%–77% of total variance for each of the subfields in the combined sample multivariate analysis. In addition, the multivariate analyses were sufficiently powered to identify common environmental influences (replicated in QTIM and HCP for the molecular layer and CA4/dentate gyrus, and accounting for 7%–16% of total variance for 8 of 10 subfields in the combined sample). This provides the clearest indication yet from a twin study that factors such as home environment may influence hippocampal volumes (albeit, with caveats).
The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic has significantly increased depression rates, particularly in emerging adults. The aim of this study was to examine longitudinal changes in depression risk before and during COVID-19 in a cohort of emerging adults in the U.S. and to determine whether prior drinking or sleep habits could predict the severity of depressive symptoms during the pandemic.
Participants were 525 emerging adults from the National Consortium on Alcohol and NeuroDevelopment in Adolescence (NCANDA), a five-site community sample including moderate-to-heavy drinkers. Poisson mixed-effect models evaluated changes in the Center for Epidemiological Studies Depression Scale (CES-D-10) from before to during COVID-19, also testing for sex and age interactions. Additional analyses examined whether alcohol use frequency or sleep duration measured in the last pre-COVID assessment predicted pandemic-related increase in depressive symptoms.
The prevalence of risk for clinical depression tripled due to a substantial and sustained increase in depressive symptoms during COVID-19 relative to pre-COVID years. Effects were strongest for younger women. Frequent alcohol use and short sleep duration during the closest pre-COVID visit predicted a greater increase in COVID-19 depressive symptoms.
The sharp increase in depression risk among emerging adults heralds a public health crisis with alarming implications for their social and emotional functioning as this generation matures. In addition to the heightened risk for younger women, the role of alcohol use and sleep behavior should be tracked through preventive care aiming to mitigate this looming mental health crisis.
This chapter focuses on psychology in South Africa as a discipline and profession embedded in a history of colonialism and apartheid. It a describes South African psychology as a site of epistemological contestation shaped by historical racial identities and relations of power and asserts that liberation psychology is central to the contribution of the profession to eliminating human rights violations and fostering well-being. National student protests in 2015–2016 called for the “decolonization” of the curriculum, bringing into sharp focus the decades-long debate about the relevance of psychology and the need for transformation. While the focus is psychology in South Africa, the chapter broadens the discussion of decolonizing the field to other nations plagued by histories of racial oppression such as Australia and the United States. Changes in the decolonizing process are not without their challenges, yet in a field of study that is one of the most popular among students, a cogent move toward decolonizing the psychology curriculum entails the invention of new voices and theories as well as liberation psychology practices that center squarely on the needs for equity, violence prevention, and social justice.
Introduction: The emergency department (ED) is often the first point of health care contact for patients with mild traumatic brain injury (MTBI). Spontaneous resolution occurs in most patients within 7 days, yet 15-30% will develop post-concussion syndrome (PCS). Given the paucity of effective management strategies to prevent PCS and emerging evidence supporting exercise, the objective of this study was to evaluate the impact of prescribed early light exercise compared to standard discharge instructions for acute MTBI patients in the ED. Methods: This was a randomized controlled trial conducted in three Canadian EDs. Consecutive, adult (18-64 years) ED patients with a MTBI sustained within the preceding 48 hours were eligible for enrollment. The intervention group received discharge instructions prescribing 30 minutes of daily light exercise (e.g., walking), and the control group was given standard MTBI instructions advising gradual return to exercise following symptom resolution. Participants documented their daily physical activities and completed follow-up questionnaires at 7, 14, and 30 days. The primary outcome was the proportion of patients with PCS at 30 days, defined as the presence of ≥ 3 symptoms on the Rivermead Post-concussion Symptoms Questionnaire (RPQ) at 30 days. Results: 367 patients were enrolled (control n = 184; intervention n = 183). Median age was 32 years and 201 (57.6%) were female. There was no difference in the proportion of patients with PCS at 30 days (control 13.4 vs intervention 14.6; Δ1.2, 95% CI: -6.2 to 8.5). There were no differences in median change of RPQ scores (control 14 vs intervention 13; Δ1, 95% CI: -1 to 4), median number of return health care provider visits (control 1 vs intervention 1; Δ0, 95% CI: 0 to 0), or median number of missed school or work days (control 2 vs intervention 2; Δ0, 95% CI: 0 to 1) at 30 days. There was a nonsignificant difference in unplanned return ED visits within 30 days (control 9.9% vs intervention 5.6%; Δ1, 95% CI: -1.4 to 10.3). Participants in the control group reported fewer minutes of light exercise at 7 days (30 vs 35; Δ5, 95% CI: 2 to 15). Conclusion: To our knowledge, this is the first randomized trial of prescribed early light exercise for adults with acute MTBI. There were no differences in recovery or healthcare utilization outcomes. Results suggest prescribed early light exercise should be encouraged as tolerated at ED discharge following MTBI, but exercise prescription alone is not sufficient to prevent PCS.
Introduction: The emergency department (ED) is the first point of health care contact for most head injured patients. Although early and spontaneous resolution occurs in most patients with mild traumatic brain injury (MTBI), between 15-30% develop post-concussion syndrome (PCS). To date, clinical prediction tools do not yet exist to accurately identify adult MTBI patients at risk of PCS. The objective of this study was to identify predictors of PCS within 30 days in adults with acute MTBI presenting to the ED. Methods: This was a secondary analysis of a randomized controlled trial conducted in three Canadian EDs evaluating prescribed light exercise compared to standard care. Adult (18-64 years) patients with a MTBI sustained within the preceding 48 hours were eligible for enrollment. Participants completed follow-up questionnaires at 7, 14, and 30 days. The primary outcome was the presence of PCS at 30 days, defined as the presence of ≥ 3 symptoms on the Rivermead Post-concussion Symptoms Questionnaire (RPQ) at 30 days. Backward, stepwise, multivariable logistic regression with a removal criterion probability of 0.05 was conducted to determine predictor variables independently associated with PCS at 30 days. Likelihood ratio tests were used to determine appropriate inclusion of variables in the multivariable model. Results are reported as odds ratios (OR) with 95% confidence intervals (CIs). Results: A total of 367 patients were enrolled, 18 (4.9%) withdrew, and 108 (29.4%) were lost to follow-up. Median (IQR) age was 32 (25 to 48) years, and 201 (57.6%) were female. Of the 241 patients who completed follow-up, 49 (20.3%) had PCS at 30 days. Headache at ED presentation (OR = 6.59; 95% CI: 1.31 to 33.11), being under the influence of drugs or alcohol at the time of injury (OR = 4.42; 95% CI: 1.31 to 14.88), the injury occurring via bike or motor vehicle collision (OR = 2.98; 95% CI: 1.39 to 6.40), history of anxiety or depression (OR = 2.49; 95% CI: 1.23 to 5.03), and the sensation of numbness or tingling at ED presentation (OR = 2.25; 95% CI: 1.04 to 4.88), were independently associated with PCS at 30 days. Conclusion: Five variables were found to be significant predictors of PCS. Although MTBI is a self-limited condition in the majority of patients, patients with these risk factors should be considered high risk and flagged for early follow-up. There continues to be an urgent need for a clinical prognostic tool that accurately identifies adult patients at risk for PCS early in their injury.
Written by Apsley Cherry-Garrard, this is an exceptional contribution to English literature. As much about exploration, scientific endeavour, human frailties and heroism, the book takes its title from an extraordinary expedition to collect the eggs of emperor penguins (Aptenodytes forsteri) in the winter darkness of Antarctica. Its main claim to fame, however, is as a memoir of the tragic quest to reach the South Pole first, on which Captain R. F. Scott and his four companions died on their return.
Fieldwork has the ingredients of intellectual curiosity, passion, rigour and engagement with the outdoor world – to name just a few. We may be simply noting what we see around us, making detailed records, employing sophisticated techniques, carrying out an experiment or, quite possibly, collaborating with a large international group of scientists. All of this and much more amounts to fieldwork.
Arguably, Thursday 1st July 1858 is the most significant date in the annals of field studies, and quite possibly for science. At the Linnean Society of London, in front of an audience of barely 30 people, two papers were read by the Society’s Secretary, John Joseph Bennett. One was written by Alfred Russel Wallace, and the other by Charles Darwin; both authors were absent – Darwin at the funeral of his tenth and last child, Charles Waring, and Wallace on an expedition in Borneo.
Notwithstanding the importance of modern technology, fieldwork remains vital, not least through helping to inspire and educate the next generation. Fieldwork has the ingredients of intellectual curiosity, passion, rigour and engagement with the outdoor world - to name just a few. You may be simply noting what you see around you, making detailed records, or carrying out an experiment; all of this and much more amounts to fieldwork. Being curious, you think about the world around you, and through patient observation develop and test ideas. Forty contributors capture the excitement and importance of fieldwork through a wide variety of examples, from urban graffiti to the Great Barrier Reef. Outdoor learning is for life: people have the greatest respect and care for their world when they have first-hand experience of it. The Editors are donating all royalties due to them to the environmental charity, The Field Studies Council, to support student fieldwork at the Council's field centres.