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Mindfulness-based interventions have received growing attention over the last years for the treatment of various mental disorders, including schizophrenia spectrum disorders (SSD), demonstrating their transdiagnostic validity. However, no study has examined the relationship of probable mechanisms underlying the therapeutic effects of mindfulness in SSD.
The current study examines the relationship between mindfulness, depression, anxiety, and quality of life in individuals with SSD through quantitative measures.
A total of 83 participants with SSD were recruited at the in- and outpatient facility of the Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin in Germany. Participants completed the Southampton Mindfulness Questionnaire, Comprehensive Inventory for Mindful Experiences, and Freiburger Mindfulness Inventory, the Depression, Anxiety, Stress Scale, and the World Health Organization Quality of Life Questionnaire. PROCESS analysis examined the relationship between mindfulness and quality of life and the mediating role of depression and anxiety.
Indicated a significant positive association between mindfulness and physical health, psychological and environmental quality of life. Depression and anxiety were found to mediate this relationship, with higher depression and anxiety scores being related to lower mindfulness and quality of life. In this relationship, however, depression was found to be the stronger predictor.
The findings of this study provide insight into the mechanisms of mindfulness. Initial evidence for the transdiagnostic and process-based clinical relevance of MBIs for SSD has been found and future studies can further explore the role of mindfulness for central therapeutic processes of change by employing longitudinal designs.
The therapeutic effectiveness of mindfulness-based interventions (MBIs) has been shown for various mental disorders. However, for schizophrenia spectrum disorders (SSD), only a few trials have been conducted, mostly in outpatient settings.
This study aimed to investigate feasibility, acceptability, and preliminary effectiveness of a four-week mindfulness-based group therapy (MBGT) for in-patients with SSD.
A pre-registered randomized controlled trial (RCT) was conducted at the in-patient ward for SSD. All measures were employed at baseline, post-intervention (4-weeks), and follow-up (12-weeks). The primary outcome was ‘mindfulness’. Secondary outcomes were rater-blinded positive- and negative symptoms, depression, social functioning, as well as self-rated mindfulness, depression, anxiety, psychological flexibility, quality of life, and medication regime.
N=40 participants were randomized into either four-week treatment-as-usual (TAU; n=19) or MBGT+TAU (n = 21). Protocol adherence was 95.2%, and the retention rate to treatments was 95%. ANCOVA analysis revealed significant improvements in the MBGT+TAU compared to TAU for the primary outcome and negative symptoms. Exploratory analyses showed medium-to-large intervention effects on secondary outcomes mindfulness, positive, negative, and depressive symptoms, psychological flexibility, quality of life, and social functioning for MBGT+TAU and small-to-moderate changes on positive symptoms and social functioning for TAU. No serious adverse effects were reported.
This study supports the feasibility and acceptability of MBGT for in-patients with SSD, including high protocol adherence and retention rates. A proof of concept of the MBIs and corresponding improvements on various clinical and process parameters warrant a fully powered RCT to determine effectiveness, cost-efficiency, and longitudinal outcomes of MBGT for SSD.
Yoga may pose a promising complementary therapy in the multimodal treatment of schizophrenia spectrum disorders (SSD). However, to date, no studies have qualitatively examined the patients’ experience of practising Yoga.
This qualitative study aimed to assess the mechanisms and processes of Yoga-based group therapy (YBGT) for in-patients with SSD by exploring their subjective experiences.
Twenty-five semi-structured interviews were conducted with in-patients with SSD after they participated in a YBGT session. Interviews were transcribed, coded by two independent researchers, and analysed using an inductive thematic approach. The research team collaboratively discussed emerging categories to reduce redundancy and form meaningful themes and subthemes.
The analysis revealed seven main themes. YBGT was perceived as feasible and focusing on individual adaptation, captured by the theme ‘inclusivity’. Nevertheless, participants encountered ‘challenges’; thus, physical limitations need to be considered. While practising together, participants experienced ‘interconnectedness’ and developed a ‘mindful stance’ as they accepted their limitations and adapted exercises with self-compassion. Following the flow of asanas required physical persistence, which ultimately led many participants to experience ‘confidence’ and ‘relaxation’. YBGT affected ‘symptom representation’ as heightened awareness led participants to notice impeding as well as improved symptoms.
YBGT seemed to have various promising effects on in-patients with SSD. Future research should examine to what extent these effects can be sustained and how the mindful approach during YBGT can be transferred to areas outside the Yoga class. Furthermore, a randomised-controlled trial could investigate the effectiveness of a manualised YBGT.
We present 63 new multi-site radial velocity (RV) measurements of the K1III giant HD 76920, which was recently reported to host the most eccentric planet known to orbit an evolved star. We focused our observational efforts on the time around the predicted periastron passage and achieved near-continuous phase coverage of the corresponding RV peak. By combining our RV measurements from four different instruments with previously published ones, we confirm the highly eccentric nature of the system and find an even higher eccentricity of
$e=0.8782 \pm 0.0025$
, an orbital period of
, and a minimum mass of
for the planet. The uncertainties in the orbital elements are greatly reduced, especially for the period and eccentricity. We also performed a detailed spectroscopic analysis to derive atmospheric stellar parameters, and thus the fundamental stellar parameters (
$M_*, R_*, L_*$
), taking into account the parallax from Gaia DR2, and independently determined the stellar mass and radius using asteroseismology. Intriguingly, at periastron, the planet comes to within 2.4 stellar radii of its host star’s surface. However, we find that the planet is not currently experiencing any significant orbital decay and will not be engulfed by the stellar envelope for at least another 50–80 Myr. Finally, while we calculate a relatively high transit probability of 16%, we did not detect a transit in the TESS photometry.
This work focuses on understanding the formation of the first massive, passive galaxies in clusters, as a first step to the development of environmental trends seen at low redshift. Cl J1449 + 0856 is an excellent case to study this - a galaxy cluster at redshift z = 1.99 that already shows evidence of a virialised atmosphere. Here we highlight two recent results: the discovery of merger-driven star formation and highly-excited molecular gas in galaxies at the core of Cl J1449, along with the lowest-mass Sunyaev-Zel’dovich detection to date.
We employ optical spectroscopy from the Multi Unit Spectroscopic Explorer (MUSE) combined with X-ray and radio data to study the highly-ionized gas (HIG) phase of the feedback in a sample of five local nearby Active Galactic Nuclei (AGN). Thanks to the superb field of view and sensitivity of MUSE, we found that the HIG, traced by the coronal line [Fe vii] λ6089, extends to scales not seen before, from 700 pc in Circinus and up to ∼2 kpc in NGC 5728 and NGC 3393. The gas morphology is complex, following closely the radio jet and the X-ray emission. Emission line ratios suggest gas excitation by shocks produced by the passage of the radio jet. This scenario is further supported by the physical conditions derived for the HIG, stressing the importance of the mechanical feedback in AGN with low-power radio jets.
We present the latest data release of the Planetary Nebulae Spectrograph Survey (PNS) of ten lenticular galaxies and two spiral galaxies. With this data set we are able to recover the galaxies’ kinematics out to several effective radii. We use a maximum likelihood method to decompose the disk and spheroid kinematics and we compare it with the kinematics of spiral and elliptical galaxies. We build the Tully- Fisher (TF) relation for these galaxies and we compare with data from the literature and simulations. We find that the disks of lenticular galaxies are hotter than the disks of spiral galaxies at low redshifts, but still dominated by rotation velocity. The mechanism responsible for the formation of these lenticular galaxies is neither major mergers, nor a gentle quenching driven by stripping or Active Galactic Nuclei (AGN) feedback.
Galaxy morphologies reflect the shapes of galaxies and their structural components, such as bulges, discs, bars, spiral arms, etc. The detailed knowledge of the morphology of a galaxy provides understanding of the physics behind its evolution, since the time of its formation, including interaction processes and influence of the environment. Thus, the more precisely we can describe a galaxy structure, the more we may understand about its formation and evolution. We present a method that measures curvature, using images, to describe galaxy structure and to infer the morphology of each component of a galaxy. We also include some preliminary results of curvature measurements for galaxies of the Southern Photometric Local Universe Survey (S-PLUS) DR1 data release and for jellyfish galaxies of the Omega Survey. We find that the median of the curvature parameter and the integrated area under the curvature give us clues on the morphology of a galaxy.
We present a machine learning methodology to separate quasars from galaxies and stars using data from S-PLUS in the Stripe-82 region. In terms of quasar classification, we achieved 95.49% for precision and 95.26% for recall using a Random Forest algorithm. For photometric redshift estimation, we obtained a precision of 6% using k-Nearest Neighbour.
We have analyzed Chandra/High Energy Transmission Grating spectra of the X-ray emission line gas in the Seyfert galaxy NGC 4151. The zeroth-order spectral images show extended H- and He-like O and Ne, up to a distance r ˜ 200 pc from the nucleus. Using the 1st-order spectra, we measure an average line velocity ˜230 km s–1, suggesting significant outflow of X-ray gas. We generated Cloudy photoionization models to fit the 1st-order spectra; the fit required three distinct emission-line components. To estimate the total mass of ionized gas (M) and the mass outflow rates, we applied the model parameters to fit the zeroth-order emission-line profiles of Ne IX and Ne X. We determined an M ≍ 5.4 × 105Mʘ. Assuming the same kinematic profile as that for the [O III] gas, derived from our analysis of Hubble Space Telescope/Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph spectra, the peak X-ray mass outflow rate is approximately 1.8 Mʘ yr–1, at r ˜ 150 pc. The total mass and mass outflow rates are similar to those determined using [O III], implying that the X-ray gas is a major outflow component. However, unlike the optical outflows, the X-ray emitting mass outflow rate does not drop off at r > 100pc, which suggests that it may have a greater impact on the host galaxy.
Sensitive (noise ∼16 μJy beam−1), high-resolution (∼10″) MeerKAT observations of show that its giant lobes have a double-shell morphology, where dense filaments are embedded in a diffuse and extended cocoon, while the central radio jets are confined within the host galaxy. The spectral radio properties of the lobes and jets of reveal that its nuclear activity is rapidly flickering. Multiple episodes of nuclear activity must have formed the radio lobes, for which the last stopped 12 Myr ago. More recently (∼3 Myr ago), a less powerful and short (≲1 Myr) phase of nuclear activity generated the central jets. The distribution and kinematics of the neutral and molecular gas in the centre give insights on the interaction between the recurrent nuclear activity and the surrounding interstellar medium.
We present spatially resolved kinematics of ionized gas in the narrow-line region (NLR) and extended narrow-line region (ENLR) in a sample of nearby active galaxies. Utilizing long-slit spectroscopy from Apache Point Observatory (APO)13s ARC 3.5 m Telescope and Hubble Space Telescope (HST) we analyzed the strong λ5007 Å [O III] emission line profiles and mapped the radial velocity distribution of gas at increasing radii from the center. We identified the extents of Active Galactic Nuclei (AGN) driven outflows in our sample and determined the distances at which the observed gas kinematics is being dominated by the rotation of the host galaxy. We also measured the effectiveness of radiative driving of the ionized gas using mass distribution profiles calculated with two-dimensional modeling of surface brightness profiles in our targets. Finally, we compared our kinematic results of the outflow sizes with the maximum distances at which the gas is being radiatively driven to investigate whether these outflows are capable of disrupting or evacuating the star-forming gas at these distances.
We used Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph (STIS) long slit medium-resolution G430M and G750M spectra to analyze the extended [O III] λ5007 emission in a sample of twelve QSO2s from Reyes et al. (2008). The purpose of the study was to determine the properties of the mass outflows and their role in AGN feedback. We measured fluxes and velocities as functions of deprojected radial distances. Using photoionization models and ionizing luminosities derived from [O III], we were able to estimate the densities for the emission-line gas. From these results, we derived masses, mass outflow rates, kinetic energies and kinetic luminosity rates as a function of radial distance for each of the targets. Masses are several times 103 - 107 solar masses, which are comparable to values determined from a recent photoionization study of Mrk 34 (Revalski). Additionally, we are studying the possible role of X-ray winds in these QSO2s.
Observations at high redshift reveal that a population of massive, quiescent galaxies (called red nuggets) already existed 10 Gyr ago. These objects undergo a significant size evolution over time, likely due to minor mergers. In this work we present an analysis of local massive compact galaxies to assess if their properties are consistent with what is expected for unevolved red nuggets (relic galaxies). Using integral field spectroscopy (IFS) data from the MaNGA survey from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS), we characterized the kinematics and properties of stellar populations of massive compact galaxies, and find that these objects exhibit, on average, a higher rotational support than a control sample of average sized early-type galaxies. This is in agreement with a scenario in which these objects have a quiet accretion history, rendering them candidates for relic galaxies.
Optically luminous early type galaxies host X-ray luminous, hot atmospheres. These hot atmospheres, which we refer to as coronae, undergo the same cooling and feedback processes as are commonly found in their more massive cousins, the gas rich atmospheres of galaxy groups and galaxy clusters. In particular, the hot coronae around galaxies radiatively cool and show cavities in X-ray images that are filled with relativistic plasma originating from jets powered by supermassive black holes (SMBH) at the galaxy centers. We discuss the SMBH feedback using an X-ray survey of early type galaxies carried out using Chandra X-ray Observatory observations. Early type galaxies with coronae very commonly have weak X-ray active nuclei and have associated radio sources. Based on the enthalpy of observed cavities in the coronae, there is sufficient energy to “balance” the observed radiative cooling. There are a very few remarkable examples of optically faint galaxies that are 1) unusually X-ray luminous, 2) have large dark matter halo masses, and 3) have large SMBHs (e.g., NGC4342 and NGC4291). These properties suggest that, in some galaxies, star formation may have been truncated at early times, breaking the simple scaling relations.
We employ Multi Unit Spectroscopic Explorer (MUSE) data to study the ionized and very ionized gas phase of the feedback in Circinus, the closest Seyfert 2 galaxy. The analysis of the nebular emission allowed us to detect a remarkable high-ionization gas outflow, out of the galaxy plane, traced by the coronal lines [Fe viii] 6089Å and [Fe x] 6374Å, extending up to 700 parsecs north-west from the nucleus. The gas kinematics reveal expanding gas shells with velocities of a few hundred km s-1, spatially coincident with prominent hard X-ray emission detected by Chandra. Density and temperature sensitive line ratios show that the extended high-ionization gas is characterized by a temperature of up to 18000 K and a gas density of ne > 102 cm−3. We propose two scenarios consistent with the observations to explain the high-ionization component of the outflow: an active galactic nuclei (AGN) ejection that took place ⁓105 yr ago or local gas excitation by shocks produced by the passage of a radio jet.
We investigated the interstellar medium (ISM) properties in the central regions of nearby Seyfert galaxies characterised by prominent conical or bi-conical outflows belonging to the MAGNUM survey by exploiting the unprecedented sensitivity, spatial and spectral coverage of the integral field spectrograph MUSE at the Very Large Telescope. We developed a novel approach based on the gas and stars kinematics to disentangle high-velocity gas in the outflow from gas in the disc to spatially track the differences in their ISM properties. This allowed us to reveal the presence of an ionisation structure within the extended outflows that can be interpreted with different photoionisation and shock conditions, and to trace tentative evidence of outflow-induced star formation (“positive” feedback) in a galaxy of the sample, Centaurus A.
We present studies of a protocluster at z =2.5, an overdense region found close to a radio galaxy, 4C 23.56, using ALMA. We observed 1.1 mm continuum, two CO lines (CO (4–3) and CO (3–2)) and the lower atomic carbon line transition ([CI](3P1-3P0)) at a few kpc (0″.3-0″.9) resolution. The primary targets are 25 star-forming galaxies selected as Hα emitters (HAEs) that are identified with a narrow band filter. These are massive galaxies with stellar masses of > 1010Mʘ that are mostly on the galaxy main sequence at z =2.5. We measure the molecular gas mass from the independent gas tracers of 1.1 mm, CO (3–2) and [CI], and investigate the gas kinematics of galaxies from CO (4–3). Molecular gas masses from the different measurements are consistent with each other for detection, with a gas fraction (fgas = Mgas/(Mgas+ Mstar)) of ≃ 0.5 on average but with a caveat. On the other hand, the CO line widths of the protocluster galaxies are typically broader by ˜50% compared to field galaxies, which can be attributed to more frequent, unresolved gas-rich mergers and/or smaller sizes than field galaxies, supported by our high-resolution images and a kinematic model fit of one of the galaxies. We discuss the expected scenario of galaxy evolution in protoclusters at high redshift but future large surveys are needed to get a more general view.
We present the first results of the Deep Integral Field Spectroscopy View of Nuclei of Galaxies (DIVING3D) survey, obtained from the analysis of the nuclear emission-line spectra of a sub-sample we call mini-DIVING3D, including all southern galaxies with B < 11.2 and |b| >15°. In comparison with previous studies, very few galaxies were classified as Transition objects. A possible explanation is that at least part of the Transition objects are composite systems, with a central low-ionization nuclear emission-line region (LINER) contaminated by the emission from circumnuclear H II regions. The high spatial resolution of the DIVING3D survey allowed us to isolate the nuclear emission from circumnuclear contaminations, reducing the number of Transition objects.
We investigate the processes of active galactic nuclei (AGN) feeding and feedback in the narrow line regions (NLRs) and host galaxies of nearby AGN through spatially resolved spectroscopy with the Gemini Near-Infrared Integral Field Spectrograph (NIFS) and the Hubble Space Telescope’s Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph (STIS). We examine the connection between nuclear and galactic inflows and outflows by adding long-slit spectra of the host galaxies from Apache Point Observatory. We demonstrate that nearby AGN can be fueled by a variety of mechanisms. We find that the NLR kinematics can often be explained by in situ ionization and radiative acceleration of ambient gas, often in the form of dusty molecular spirals that may be the fueling flow to the AGN.