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A setup for ion-laser interaction was coupled to the state-of-the-art AMS facility VERA five years ago and its potential and applicability as a new means of isobar suppression in accelerator mass spectrometry (AMS) has since been explored. Laser photodetachment and molecular dissociation processes of anions provide unprecedented isobar suppression factors of >1010 for several established AMS isotopes like 36Cl or 26Al and give access to new AMS isotopes like 90Sr, 135Cs or 182Hf at a 3-MV-tandem facility. Furthermore, Ion-Laser InterAction Mass Spectrometry has been proven to meet AMS requirements regarding reliability and robustness with a typical reproducibility of results of 3%. The benefits of the technique are in principle available to any AMS machine, irrespective of attainable ion beam energy. Since isobar suppression via this technique is so efficient, there often is no need for any additional element separation in the detection setup and selected nuclides may even become accessible without accelerator at all.
Little is known about the determinants of community integration (i.e. recovery) for individuals with a history of homelessness, yet such information is essential to develop targeted interventions.
We recruited homeless Veterans with a history of psychotic disorders and evaluated four domains of correlates of community integration: perception, non-social cognition, social cognition, and motivation. Baseline assessments occurred after participants were engaged in supported housing services but before they received housing, and again after 12 months. Ninety-five homeless Veterans with a history of psychosis were assessed at baseline and 53 returned after 12 months. We examined both cross-sectional and longitudinal relationships with 12-month community integration.
The strongest longitudinal association was between a baseline motivational measure and social integration at 12 months. We also observed cross-sectional associations at baseline between motivational measures and community integration, including social, work, and independent living. Cross-lagged panel analyses did not suggest causal associations for the motivational measures. Correlations with perception and non-social cognition were weak. One social cognition measure showed a significant longitudinal correlation with independent living at 12 months that was significant for cross-lagged analysis, consistent with a causal relationship and potential treatment target.
The relatively selective associations for motivational measures differ from what is typically seen in psychosis, in which all domains are associated with community integration. These findings are presented along with a partner paper (Study 2) to compare findings from this study to an independent sample without a history of psychotic disorders to evaluate the consistency in findings regarding community integration across projects.
In an initial study (Study 1), we found that motivation predicted community integration (i.e. functional recovery) 12 months after receiving housing in formerly homeless Veterans with a psychotic disorder. The current study examined whether the same pattern would be found in a broader, more clinically diverse, homeless Veteran sample without psychosis.
We examined four categories of variables as potential predictors of community integration in non-psychotic Veterans: perception, non-social cognition, social cognition, and motivation at baseline (after participants were engaged in a permanent supported housing program but before receiving housing) and a 12-month follow-up. A total of 82 Veterans had a baseline assessment and 41 returned for testing after 12 months.
The strongest longitudinal association was between an interview-based measure of motivation (the motivation and pleasure subscale from the Clinical Assessment Interview for Negative Symptoms) at baseline and measures of social integration at 12 months. In addition, cross-lagged panel analyses were consistent with a causal influence of general psychiatric symptoms at baseline driving social integration at 12 months, and reduced expressiveness at baseline driving independent living at 12 months, but there were no significant causal associations with measures of motivation.
The findings from this study complement and reinforce those in Veterans with psychosis. Across these two studies, our findings suggest that motivational factors are associated at baseline and at 12 months and are particularly important for understanding and improving community integration in recently-housed Veterans across psychiatric diagnoses.
Borderline personality disorder is associated with deficits in personality functioning and mentalisation. In a randomised controlled trial 104 people with borderline personality disorder received either transference-focused psychotherapy (TFP) or treatment by experienced community therapists. Among other outcome variables, mentalisation was assessed by means of the Reflective Functioning Scale (RF Scale). Findings revealed only significant improvements in reflective function in the TFP group within 1 year of treatment. The between-group effect was of medium size (d = 0.45). Improvements in reflective function were significantly correlated with improvements in personality organisation.
Stroke is the leading cause of permanent disability, including post-stroke dementia, pain, depression, and personality changes. While large clinical trials reflect information about large stroke populations, the presentation of each and every stroke patient is individual and special. More Case Studies in Stroke presents a new selection of stroke cases from seven countries prepared by practising stroke physicians. The book includes both common and unusual cases, as well as misleading cases of diseases mimicking stroke. The aim is to reinforce diagnostic skills through careful analysis of individual presenting patterns, and to guide treatment decisions. Each case consists of a clinical history, examination findings and special investigations, followed by diagnosis and discussion. The outline of the actual diagnostic process, including the use of modern diagnostic tools, decision making and course, challenge the reader at all stages of their career from medical students to neurologists and stroke physicians.
Recently, we reported a reduced retinal contrast gain in unmedicated and
medicated patients with major depression.
To analyse whether the contrast gain normalises after successful
antidepressive therapy by recording the pattern electroretinogram (PERG)
in healthy controls and patients with depression before and after
Fourteen patients diagnosed with major depression were repeatedly scanned
and the results compared with that from 40 matched controls.
The retinal contrast gain was lower at baseline in patients with
depression, was normalised with remission and correlated with the
severity of depression. Patients who did not achieve remission retained
significantly lower contrast gain at follow-up.
The study provides evidence for a state-dependent modulation of retinal
contrast gain in patients with major depression. Reduced contrast gain
normalised after therapy. A PERG-based contrast gain could serve as a
state marker of depression.