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The most common treatment for major depressive disorder (MDD) is antidepressant medication (ADM). Results are reported on frequency of ADM use, reasons for use, and perceived effectiveness of use in general population surveys across 20 countries.
Face-to-face interviews with community samples totaling n = 49 919 respondents in the World Health Organization (WHO) World Mental Health (WMH) Surveys asked about ADM use anytime in the prior 12 months in conjunction with validated fully structured diagnostic interviews. Treatment questions were administered independently of diagnoses and asked of all respondents.
3.1% of respondents reported ADM use within the past 12 months. In high-income countries (HICs), depression (49.2%) and anxiety (36.4%) were the most common reasons for use. In low- and middle-income countries (LMICs), depression (38.4%) and sleep problems (31.9%) were the most common reasons for use. Prevalence of use was 2–4 times as high in HICs as LMICs across all examined diagnoses. Newer ADMs were proportionally used more often in HICs than LMICs. Across all conditions, ADMs were reported as very effective by 58.8% of users and somewhat effective by an additional 28.3% of users, with both proportions higher in LMICs than HICs. Neither ADM class nor reason for use was a significant predictor of perceived effectiveness.
ADMs are in widespread use and for a variety of conditions including but going beyond depression and anxiety. In a general population sample from multiple LMICs and HICs, ADMs were widely perceived to be either very or somewhat effective by the people who use them.
Concerns have been raised about ecological momentary assessment (EMA) acceptability among patients with schizophrenia spectrum disorders (SSD), which is of major relevance during the e-Mental health-focused COVID-19 pandemic.
To investigate i) the levels of adherence to a passive smartphone-based EMA tool, the Evidence-Based Behavior (eB2), among SSD patients; and ii) putative predictors of this.
Sample: SSD (F20-29-ICD10) outpatients, age 18-64, without financial incentives, recruited over 17/06/2019-11/03/2020 at the Hospital Universitario Fundación Jiménez Díaz (Madrid, Spain). Those who accepted the eB2 installation -users- and those who did not -non-users- were compared in sociodemographic, clinical, premorbid adjustment, neurocognitive, psychopathological, insight and metacognitive variables by a multivariable binary logistic regression model.
Sample (N=77): n=41 males; age: 47.69±9.76 years, n=24 users (31.2%). n=14 users (70%) had the eB2 installed at follow-up (median=14.50 weeks).
Multivariable binary logistic regression model on ‘user’ as outcome
Acceptability of a smartphone-based EMA application among SSD patients was low. Age (young) and good premorbid adjustment predicted acceptability. e-Mental Health methods need to be tailored for patients with SSD. Otherwise, these highly vulnerable individuals may be neglected by e-health-based services in the post-COVID-19 years ahead.
Altered fear learning processes could be mechanistically linked to the development and/or maintenance of obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). From a clinical perspective, the first-line psychological treatment for OCD is cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT), which is based on the principles of fear learning. However, no previous functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) studies have evaluated the predictive capacity of regional brain activations during fear learning on CBT response in patients with OCD.
We aimed at exploring whether brain activation during fear learning in patients with OCD are associated with CBT outcome.
We assessed 18 patients with OCD and 18 healthy participants during a 2-day experimental protocol where brain activation and skin conductance responses (SCR) where assessed during fear conditioning, extinction learning, and extinction recall within the fMRI scanner. Following the protocol, patients with OCD received CBT.
We found non-significant between-group differences in SCR during fear learning. Patients with OCD showed significantly diminished activation of the dorsal anterior cingulate cortex and the right insula during fear conditioning. Importantly, our analyses revealed a significant negative association between clinical improvement after CBT and activity at the right insula during fear conditioning (x = 39, y = 12, z = -11; t = 5.64; p<0.001; k = 928). This finding is displayed in Figure 1 below.
Patients with OCD may require less fear-conditioned brain responses to achieve the same level of psychophysiological fear conditioning as healthy participants. Interestingly, insula activations during fear-conditioned responses may represent a potential predictor biomarker of response to CBT for OCD.
Although the consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic on emotional health are evident, little is known about its impact on patients with obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD).
One hundred and twenty-seven patients with OCD who attended a specialist OCD Clinic in Barcelona, Spain, were assessed by phone from April 27 to May 25, 2020, during the early phase of the pandemic, using the Yale–Brown Obsessive–Compulsive Scale (Y-BOCS) and a structured interview that collected clinical and sociodemographic information. Results were compared with those for 237 healthy controls from the same geographic area who completed an online survey.
Although 65.3% of the patients with OCD described a worsening of their symptoms, only 31.4% had Y-BOCS scores that increased >25%. The risk of getting infected by SARS-CoV2 was reported as a new obsession by 44.8%, but this only became the main obsessive concern in approximately 10% of the patients. Suicide-related thoughts were more frequent among the OCD cohort than among healthy controls. The presence of prepandemic depression, higher Y-BOCS scores, contamination/washing symptoms, and lower perceived social support all predicted a significantly increased risk of OCD worsening.
Most patients with OCD appear to be capable of coping with the emotional stress of the COVID-19 outbreak and its consequences during the initial phase of the pandemic. Nevertheless, the current crisis constitutes a risk factor for a significant worsening of symptoms and suicidal ideation. Action is needed to ensure effective and individualized follow-up care for patients with OCD in the COVID-19 era.
To investigate the prevalence of suicidal thoughts and behaviours (STB; i.e. suicidal ideation, plans or attempts) in the Spanish adult general population during the first wave of the Spain coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic (March−July, 2020), and to investigate the individual- and population-level impact of relevant distal and proximal STB risk factor domains.
Cross-sectional study design using data from the baseline assessment of an observational cohort study (MIND/COVID project). A nationally representative sample of 3500 non-institutionalised Spanish adults (51.5% female; mean age = 49.6 [s.d. = 17.0]) was taken using dual-frame random digit dialing, stratified for age, sex and geographical area. Professional interviewers carried out computer-assisted telephone interviews (1–30 June 2020). Thirty-day STB was assessed using modified items from the Columbia Suicide Severity Rating Scale. Distal (i.e. pre-pandemic) risk factors included sociodemographic variables, number of physical health conditions and pre-pandemic lifetime mental disorders; proximal (i.e. pandemic) risk factors included current mental disorders and a range of adverse events-experiences related to the pandemic. Logistic regression was used to investigate individual-level associations (odds ratios [OR]) and population-level associations (population attributable risk proportions [PARP]) between risk factors and 30-day STB. All data were weighted using post-stratification survey weights.
Estimated prevalence of 30-day STB was 4.5% (1.8% active suicidal ideation; n = 5 [0.1%] suicide attempts). STB was 9.7% among the 34.3% of respondents with pre-pandemic lifetime mental disorders, and 1.8% among the 65.7% without any pre-pandemic lifetime mental disorder. Factors significantly associated with STB were pre-pandemic lifetime mental disorders (total PARP = 49.1%) and current mental disorders (total PARP = 58.4%), i.e. major depressive disorder (OR = 6.0; PARP = 39.2%), generalised anxiety disorder (OR = 5.6; PARP = 36.3%), post-traumatic stress disorder (OR = 4.6; PARP = 26.6%), panic attacks (OR = 6.7; PARP = 36.6%) and alcohol/substance use disorder (OR = 3.3; PARP = 5.9%). Pandemic-related adverse events-experiences associated with STB were lack of social support, interpersonal stress, stress about personal health and about the health of loved ones (PARPs 32.7–42.6%%), and having loved ones infected with COVID-19 (OR = 1.7; PARP = 18.8%). Up to 74.1% of STB is potentially attributable to the joint effects of mental disorders and adverse events−experiences related to the pandemic.
STB at the end of the first wave of the Spain COVID-19 pandemic was high, and large proportions of STB are potentially attributable to mental disorders and adverse events−experiences related to the pandemic, including health-related stress, lack of social support and interpersonal stress. There is an urgent need to allocate resources to increase access to adequate mental healthcare, even in times of healthcare system overload.
In support of the ICRF experiments planned on the Wendelstein 7-X (W7-X) stellarator, i.e. fast ion generation, wall conditioning, target plasma production and heating, a first experimental study on plasma production has been made in the Uragan-2M (U-2M) stellarator using W7-X-like two-strap antenna. In all the experiments, antenna monopole phasing was used. The W7-X-like antenna operation with launched radiofrequency power of ~100 kW have been performed in helium (p = (4–14) × 10−2 Pa) with the vacuum vessel walls pre-loaded with hydrogen. Production of plasma with a density higher than 1012 cm−3 was observed near the first harmonic of the hydrogen cyclotron frequency. Operation at first hydrogen harmonic is feasible in W7-X future ICRF experiments.
Using an ensemble of close- and long-range remote sensing, lake bathymetry and regional meteorological data, we present a detailed assessment of the geometric changes of El Morado Glacier in the Central Andes of Chile and its adjacent proglacial lake between 1932 and 2019. Overall, the results revealed a period of marked glacier down wasting, with a mean geodetic glacier mass balance of −0.39 ± 0.15 m w.e.a−1 observed for the entire glacier between 1955 and 2015 with an area loss of 40% between 1955 and 2019. We estimate an ice elevation change of −1.00 ± 0.17 m a−1 for the glacier tongue between 1932 and 2019. The increase in the ice thinning rates and area loss during the last decade is coincident with the severe drought in this region (2010–present), which our minimal surface mass-balance model is able to reproduce. As a result of the glacier changes observed, the proglacial lake increased in area substantially between 1955 and 2019, with bathymetry data suggesting a water volume of 3.6 million m3 in 2017. This study highlights the need for further monitoring of glacierised areas in the Central Andes. Such efforts would facilitate a better understanding of the downstream impacts of glacier downwasting.
The loggerhead turtle (Caretta caretta) is a circumglobal species and is listed as vulnerable globally. The North Pacific population nests in Japan and migrates to the Central North Pacific and Pacific coast of North America to feed. In the Mexican Pacific, records of loggerhead presence are largely restricted to the Gulf of Ulloa along the Baja California Peninsula, where very high fisheries by-catch mortality has been reported. Records of loggerhead turtles within the Sea of Cortez also known as the Gulf of California (GC) exist; however, their ecology in this region is poorly understood. We used satellite tracking and an environmental variable analysis (chlorophyll-a (Chl-a) and sea surface temperature (SST)) to determine movements and habitat use of five juvenile loggerhead turtles ranging in straight carapace length from 62.7–68.3 cm (mean: 66.7 ± 2.3 cm). Satellite tracking durations ranged from 73–293 days (mean: 149 ± 62.5 days), transmissions per turtle from 14–1006 (mean: 462 ± 379.5 transmissions) and total travel distance from 1237–5222 km (mean: 3118 ± 1490.7 km). We used travel rate analyses to identify five foraging areas in the GC, which occurred mainly in waters from 10–80 m deep, with mean Chl-a concentrations ranging from 0.28–13.14 mg m−3 and SST ranging from 27.8–34.4°C. This is the first study to describe loggerhead movements in the Gulf of California and our data suggest that loggerhead foraging movements are performed in areas with eutrophic levels of Chl-a.
There is a substantial proportion of patients who drop out of treatment before they receive minimally adequate care. They tend to have worse health outcomes than those who complete treatment. Our main goal is to describe the frequency and determinants of dropout from treatment for mental disorders in low-, middle-, and high-income countries.
Respondents from 13 low- or middle-income countries (N = 60 224) and 15 in high-income countries (N = 77 303) were screened for mental and substance use disorders. Cross-tabulations were used to examine the distribution of treatment and dropout rates for those who screened positive. The timing of dropout was examined using Kaplan–Meier curves. Predictors of dropout were examined with survival analysis using a logistic link function.
Dropout rates are high, both in high-income (30%) and low/middle-income (45%) countries. Dropout mostly occurs during the first two visits. It is higher in general medical rather than in specialist settings (nearly 60% v. 20% in lower income settings). It is also higher for mild and moderate than for severe presentations. The lack of financial protection for mental health services is associated with overall increased dropout from care.
Extending financial protection and coverage for mental disorders may reduce dropout. Efficiency can be improved by managing the milder clinical presentations at the entry point to the mental health system, providing adequate training, support and specialist supervision for non-specialists, and streamlining referral to psychiatrists for more severe cases.
Mixed Bipolar patients are those who have co-existing depressive symptoms during mania. These patients are supposed to have a worse evolution.
The objective of this study was to compare the long-term outcomes of patients who had at least one mixed episode with those who experienced only pure manic episodes.
169 outpatients diagnosed of Bipolar I disorder and treated at least during two years were included. 120 patients (71%) complited the follow-up over 10 years. Baseline demographic and clinical variables were included.
The patients with mixed episodes (37%) had a significantly younger mean age at onset comparing with those with manic episodes (25.3 years vs. 30.8 years; p=0.025) they also had more previous mood- incongruent psychotic symptoms χ2= 6.77, p=0.034), more number of hospitalizations (OR= 1.36, 95% CI = 1.14; -1.63; p< 0.001), and more number of episodes (OR= 1.21, 95% CI = 1.10-1.31; p< 0.001). There were no significant differences relating to depressive episodes, alcohol use, drug abuse, suicidal behaviour and suicide attempts.
Age at onset differed significantly between the mixed episode and pure mania groups, with mixed episode patients having a younger age of onset. This is interesting as one of the major results of the study we have found that age at onset mediates some of the factors classically related to outcome in mixed episodes like alcohol abuse and suicide attempts. However, independently of age at onset, these patients represent a especially severe type of bipolar disorder.
The complex interrelationship between personality disorders and bipolar disorders is still a controversial aspect with multiple diagnosis, therapeutic and ethiologic implications.
Comorbidity has been defined as the presence of more than one disorder in the same patient at the same time.
We made a literature review between 1995 and 2005 about comorbidity in bipolar and personality disorders.
There are different studies that agree the theory that personality disorders are previous forms of bipolar disorders.
Besides, it is important to consider the effect that bipolar disorders have over personality.
In the last years, different authors have suggested that co-morbid personality disorders predict a worse evolution in the course of the bipolar disorders, finding recurrent and resistant to treatment affective symptoms.
The co-occurrence studies of personality and affective disorders have ranged from 3 to 70%.
If we take the global n (428) of all the reviewed articles, we see that the percentage of comorbidity between personality disorders and bipolar disorders is almost the 48% of the studied patients. Looking at the most prevalent cluster, cluster A is the 13%, cluster B is near the 39% and cluster C the 35%.
Personality traits, dimensions and personality disorders seem to play an important role in the evolution of bipolar disorders.
The identification of these specific personality traits and the knowledge of the influence in the evolution of the illness are extremely important in the treatment and prevention of bipolar disorders.
The introduction of the first atypical antipsychotic with a long acting formulation has open new therapeutic options for the treatment of schizophrenic patients. Our objective consists of comparing psychopathology levels and global functioning in patients with paranoid schizophrenia treated in monotherapy either with long-acting injectable risperidone (LAIR) or conventional depot antipsychotics (DA).
Patients attending at the community mental health center during the six-month recruitment period were eligible to enter the study. Scores achieved in positive and negative subscales of PANNS and EEAG scale of (Global Activity Evaluating Scale) were evaluated at baseline and 6 months later. Six patients treated with RLAI and six patients treated with DA were recruited. Data were analyzed both with the real sample (N=6 per group) and extrapoling the same results to a bigger sample size (N=24 per group).
Mean increase in scores for both PANNS positive and negative subscales were lower in patients treated with RLAI that in those treated with DA (positive subscale: 0.018±0.06 vs. 0.048±0.03, RLAI and DA, respectively, p=0.387; negative subscale: 0.232±0.076 vs. 0.3095±0.123, RLAI and DA, respectively, p=0.579). EEAG scores were higher for patients treated with RLAI than those treated with DA (1.250±0.56 vs. 0.333±0.225, p=0.144). When these results are extrapolated to a sample of 24 patients per group, differences in EEAG reach statistical significance (p=0.034).
After 6 months of treatment, patients treated with RLAI tend to show a greater improvement in their global activity than those treated with DA.
To compare CATIE, a randomized double blind study, and SOHO, a 3-year prospective non-randomized observational European study of outpatients with schizophrenia, on the Number Needed to Treat (NNT) for all-cause medication discontinuation. NNTs place data into a clinically meaningful context - the number of patients needed to be treated with one antipsychotic instead of another to prevent one negative outcome, defined here as one additional medication discontinuation for any cause.
Rate of medication discontinuation for any cause during the 18 months post initiation was calculated for patients newly initiated on olanzapine (N=4247), risperidone (N=1549), quetiapine (N=583), amisulpride (N=256), clozapine (N=274), oral typicals (N=471) or depot typicals (N=348). Cox models were employed to adjust for treatment group differences at baseline. NNTs with their 95% confidence intervals were calculated and compared with published NNTs for CATIE (Phase 1).
The NNTs for all-cause discontinuation of olanzapine vs. each studied atypical antipsychotic during the 18 month following medication initiation in SOHO were comparable to CATIE: 4.3(95% CI: 3.6–5.3) for olanzapine vs. quetiapine (5.5 in CATIE); 16.1(11.0–28.1) for olanzapine vs. risperidone (10.1 in CATIE); 6.9(5.2–10.1) for olanzapine vs. oral typicals (9.0 in CATIE for olanzapine vs. perphenazine).
The NNTs for all-cause medication discontinuation based on CATIE appeared comparable to NNTs based on SOHO. The NNTs for olanzapine therapy were consistently better when compared to each studied atypical antipsychotic (except clozapine) and when compared to typical antipsychotics. Results should be interpreted conservatively, due to the observational design of SOHO.
Known by many different names-culture broker, community interpreter, medical interpreter, and communication facilitator-the intercultural mediator has as a primary task the facilitation of communication and the therapeutic relationship in the presence of linguistic and/or cultural difference. The Immigration Plan of “la Caixa” Social and Cultural Outreach Projects has undertaken an ambitious project to train all of the cultural mediators in Spain, including both those currently working and those newly entering the field, to meet existing needs. In the first phase of the project, the training was developed in Catalunya, in collaboration with the the Catalan Department of Health, executed by the Psychiatry Department of the Vall d'Hebron University Hospital (Autonomous University of Barcelona) and certified by the Health Studies Institute of the Department of Health. Drawing from the four years experience of the NGO SURT and the Department of Psychiatry of the Vall d'Hebron University Hospital, the program provides 200 hours of theoretical and 1200 hours of practical training. 50 currently employed intercultural mediators and 30 novices are being trained. In subsequent phases the training will be adapted to needs of other autonomous regions of Spain. Modules include medical anthropology, Western biomedicine, community health, linguistic interpretation, cultural competence, professional identity, and ethics. Small group supervision provides a supportive environment to facilitate the application of theory to practice. Finally, high quality training materials were developed specifically for the course. Preliminary evaluations of the project are positive despite some unanticipated complications.
The poorly understood aetiology of schizophrenia is known to involve a major genetic contribution even though the genetic factors remain elusive. Most genetic studies are based on Mendelian rules and focus on the nuclear genome, but current studies indicate that other genetic mechanisms are probably involved. This review focuses on mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA), a maternally inherited, 16.6-Kb molecule crucial for energy production that is implicated in numerous human traits and disorders. The aim of this review is to summarise the studies that have explored mtDNA in schizophrenia patients and those which provide evidence for its implication in this illness. Alterations in mitochondrial morphometry, brain energy metabolism, and enzymatic activity in the mitochondrial respiratory chain suggest a mitochondrial dysfunction in schizophrenia that could be related to the genetic characteristics of mtDNA. Moreover, evidence of maternal inheritance and the presence of schizophrenia symptoms in patients suffering from a mitochondrial disorder related to an mtDNA mutation suggest that mtDNA is involved in schizophrenia. The association of specific variants has been reported at the molecular level; however, additional studies are needed to determine whether the mitochondrial genome is involved in schizophrenia.
This study attempted to determine whether Anorexia nervosa (AN), Bulimia nervosa (BN) and Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) share clinical and psychopathological traits.
The sample consisted of 90 female patients (30 OCD; 30 AN; 30 BN), who had been consecutively referred to our Unit. All subjects met DSM-IV criteria for those pathologies. The assessment consisted on the Maudsley Obsessive-Compulsive Inventory, Questionnaire of obsessive traits and personality by Vallejo, Eating Attitudes Test-40, Eating Disorder Inventory, and Beck Depression Inventory. ANCOVA tests (adjusted for age and body mass index) and multiple linear regression models based on obsessive-compulsiveness, obsessive personality traits and perfectionism, as independent variables, were applied to determine the best predictors of eating disorder severity.
ANCOVA revealed several significant differences between obsessive-compulsive and eating disordered patients (MOCI, p < 0.001; EAT, p < 0.001; EDI, p < 0.001), whereas some obsessive personality traits were not eating disorder-specific. 16.7% OCD presented a comorbid eating disorder, whereas 3.3% eating disorders had an OCD diagnosis. In the eating disorder group, the presence of OC symptomatology was positively associated (r = 0.57, p < 0.001) with the severity of the eating disorder. The results were maintained after adjusting for comorbidity.
Although some obsessive-compulsive and eating disorder patients share common traits (e.g. some personality traits especially between OCD and AN), both disorders seem to be clinically and psychopathologically different.
Ekbom's syndrome or delusional parasitosis (DP), is an “uncommon psychiatric syndrome” characterized by the presence of delusion of infestation.
The syndrome may be seen in association wiht a number of neuropsychiatric conditions, including bipolar disorder, paranoia,schizophrenia, dementia, depression as well as abuse of drugs, such as cocaine or amphetamines. Previously, DP was often considered to be a monosymptomatic hypochondraical psychosis. Delusions of parasitosis has also been reported in association with a number of medical conditions that are characterized by itching.
To review the literature through a case report.
A 52 year-old female, unmarried who lives alone, was admitted for parasitosis delusions that had started in the last two months. She complained of vermins crawling through her skin, mainly on her face and scalp. The illness began with pricking and itching sensations on her head. She used to put the “little animals” in a piece of paper to prove their existence. Risperodone was started up to 3 mg per day. She had a progressive clinical improvement and in one week was discharged.
In conclusion, rather than a unique illness, DP is a neuropsychiatric syndrome that can follow primary psychotic and depressive disorders, dementia or other organic diseases. The typical patient is an elderly woman who is unmarried or living along.
There have been no double-blind studies confirming that atypical antipsychotics are more effective than pimozide in the treatment of DP. Further trials are warranted to study the true efficacy of atypical antipsychotics in the treatment of DP.
In this exhibition we aim to describe a clinical case and the different consequences that may present additional problems with eating disorders, focusing with emphasis on development and clinical picture. This disorder usually occurs in non-obese adolescents accused, showing symptoms significantly related to interpersonal functioning of these adolescents, who tend to be isolated or seek company of younger guys. They are characteristic of obsessive-compulsive disorders related or unrelated to the food. Dietary restriction involves biological and physical changes, highlighting the alteration of hypothalamic and endocrine system, leading to signs and symptoms such as amenorrhea, cold intolerance, hypotension … Neurochemical changes have also been attributed to malnutrition.
The present case is a 31 year old woman. Initiates contact with Mental Health at age 15 by anorexia nervosa. Patient requests for worsening nutritional status, family relationships, and alcohol consumption, being the turning point and main motivation, the birth of his daughter. 8 months ago gave birth, being an unexpected delivery at home. Unaware that pregnancy, justifying as secondary amenorrhea eating disorder and abdominal inflammation malnutrition. Daughter born seven months income requires low weight and withdrawal symptoms during pregnancy as continuous with anxiolytic and antidepressant treatment.
It has a favorable, always maintaining therapeutic commitment announced at the beginning of tratamiento. Currently still in out patient reviews with Psychiatry, Clinical Psychology, Nursing and Nutrition.
Psychedelic drugs were used extensively in psychotherapy in the 1950s to lower psychological defences and facilitate emotional insight. Thousands of research participants were administered hallucinogens in the context of basic clinical research or therapeutic clinical research, resulting in hundreds of publications. Results across studies were ultimately inconclusive due to such variations in methods and a lack of modern controls and experimental rigour. The growing controversy and sensationalism resulted in increasing restrictions on access to hallucinogens throughout the 1960s (ultimately resulting in the placement of the most popular hallucinogens into Schedule I of the 1970 Controlled Substances Act in the United States).
Renewed human administration research began in the 1990s. Recent clinical studies have administered hallucinogens to evaluate their safety and efficacy in the treatment of psychiatric disorders: specifically, anxiety related to advanced-stage cancer (Grob, 2005), obsessive-compulsive disorder (Moreno, et al., 2006), heroin dependence (Krupitsky, et al., 2007), personal meaning and spiritual significance (Griffiths, et al., 2008), and a meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials of LSD for alcoholism (Krebs,et al., 2012).
Psychedelic-assisted psychotherapy utilizes the acute psychological effects of psychedelic drugs to enhance the normal mechanisms of psychotherapy. The effects of psychedelic psychotherapy are often very pronounced within several days or weeks after a treatment session, but then these effects quickly decline. This phenomenon was termed a “psychedelic afterglow”.
Fhurther research, blinded, randomized, placebo-controlled, methodology should explore the efficacy of hallucinogens.
Contemporary cognitive models emphasize the importance of certain dysfunctional beliefs in the development and maintenance of Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD): overimportance of thoughts, need to control thoughts, perfectionism, intolerance of uncertainty, inflated responsibility, and overestimation of threat. Although a recent twin study suggests that these dysfunctional beliefs are significantly heritable, there have been no previous attempts to analyze candidate genes associated with them.
Our study aimed to investigate the possible association between OC-related dysfunctional beliefs and variants of two functional polymorphisms of the COMT (Val158Met) and BDNF (Val66Met) genes in 141 OCD patients.
The non-synonymous mutation Val158Met (rs4680) in the COMT gene and the Val66Met functional variant (rs6265) in the BDNF gene were genotyped with the KASPar assay system. The validated Spanish short version of the Obsessive Beliefs Questionnaire, (OBQ-44), was used to assess dysfunctional beliefs. Multivariate analysis of covariance (MANCOVA) and a post hoc one-way analysis of covariance (ANCOVA) were perfomed.
Variability in dysfunctional beliefs was not affected by the COMT or BDNF genotype when examining the two genes in isolation, but we detected a significant COMT x BDNF interaction effect on responsibility and overestimation of threat scores. These cognitive distortions were significantly higher among OCD subjects with the BDNF Met-present genotype who were also carriers of the COMT Val/Met and Met/Met genotypes.
Our data suggest that an interaction between dopaminergic and neurotrophic functional gene variants influences some of the dysfunctional belief domains hypothesized to contribute to the etiology of OCD.