ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202104.0091.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: COVID-19; healthcare workers; United Kingdom; mental health; burnout; resilience; insomnia; depression; anxiety; lifestyle
Online: 5 April 2021 (10:24:40 CEST)
The burden of COVID-19 pandemic on health systems and the physical and mental health of healthcare workers (HCWs) has been substantial. This cross-sectional study aims to assess the effects of Covid-19 on the psychological wellbeing of mental health workers who provide care to a vulnerable patient population that have been particularly affected during this crisis. A total of 387 HCWs from across a large urban mental health service completed a self-administered questionnaire consisting of socio-demographic, lifestyle and work-based information and validated psychometric scales. Depression and anxiety were measured using the Patient Health Questionnaire (PHQ-9) and the Generalized Anxiety Disorder Scale (GAD-7) respectively, sleep problems with the Athens Insomnia Scale (AIS), burnout with the Maslach Burnout Inventory (MBI) and resilience with the Resilience Scale-14 (RS-14). Multivariable logistic regression analysis was performed to determine potential mediating factors. Prevalence of burnout was notable, with 52% recording moderate/severe in Emotional Exhaustion, 19.5% moderate/severe in Depersonalisation and 55.5% low/moderate Personal Accomplishment. Over half of all respondents (52%) experienced sleep problems; the presence of depressive symptoms was a significant predictor of insomnia. An increase in potentially harmful lifestyle changes, such as smoking, alcohol consumption and over-eating was also observed. However, high Resilience was reported by 70% of the sample and the importance of this is highlighted. Female gender was associated with increased levels of depression and emotional exhaustion while those with a history of mental health conditions were most at risk of affective symptoms, insomnia and burnout. Overall, our study revealed considerable levels of psychological distress and maladaptive coping strategies but also resilience and satisfaction with organizational support provided. Findings can inform tailored interventions in order to mitigate vulnerability and prevent long-term psychological sequelae.
Wed, 24 March 2021
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202012.0625.v3
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: depression; anxiety disorders; existential psychotherapy; logotherapy; meaning-centered psychotherapy; functional magnetic resonance imaging; biomarker; kynurenines; Martin Heidegger; Viktor Frankl
Online: 24 March 2021 (13:18:24 CET)
Psychotherapy is a comprehensive biological treatment modifying complex underlying cognitive, emotional, behavioral, and regulatory responses in the brain, leading patients with mental illness to a new interpretation of the sense of self and others. Psychotherapy is an art of science integrated with psychology and/or philosophy. Neurological science studies the neurological basis of cognition, memory, and behavior as well as the impact of neurological damage and disease on the functions, and their treatment. Both psychotherapy and neurological science deal with the brain; nevertheless, they continue to stay polarized far. Existential phenomenological psychotherapy (EPP) has been in the forefront of meaning-centered counseling for almost a century. The phenomenological approach in psychotherapy originated in the works of Martin Heidegger, Ludwig Binswanger, Medard Boss and Viktor Frankl, and it has been committed to account for the existential possibilities and limitations of one’s life. EPP provides philosophically rich interpretations and empowers counseling techniques to assist mentally suffering individuals by finding meaning and purpose of life. The approach has proven to be effective in treating mood and anxiety disorders. This narrative review article demonstrates the development of EPP, the therapeutic methodology, evidence-based accounts of its curative techniques, current understanding of mood and anxiety disorders in neurological science, and a possible converging path to translate and integrate meaning-centered psychotherapy and neuroscience, concluding that the existential phenomenological psychotherapy potently plays a synergistic role with the currently prevailing medication-based approaches for the treatment of mood and anxiety disorders.
Wed, 17 March 2021
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202012.0625.v2
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: depression; anxiety disorders; existential psychotherapy; logotherapy; meaning-centered psychotherapy; functional magnetic resonance imaging; biomarker; kynurenines; Martin Heidegger; Viktor Frankl
Online: 17 March 2021 (11:11:25 CET)
Psychotherapy is a comprehensive biological treatment modifying complex underlying cognitive, emotional, behavioral, and regulatory responses in the brain, leading patients with mental illness to a new interpretation of the sense of self and others. Psychotherapy is an art of science integrated with psychology and/or philosophy. Neurological science studies the neurological basis of cognition, memory, and behavior as well as the impact of neurological damage and disease on the functions, and their treatment. Both psychotherapy and neurological science deal with the brain; nevertheless, they continue to stay polarized far. Existential phenomenological psychotherapy (EPP) has been in the forefront of meaning-centered counseling for almost a century. The phenomenological approach in psychotherapy originated in the works of Martin Heidegger, Ludwig Binswanger, Medard Boss and Viktor Frankl, and it has been committed to account for the existential possibilities and limitations of one’s life. EPP provides philosophically rich interpretations and empowers counseling techniques to assist mentally suffering individuals by finding meaning and purpose of life. The approach has proven to be effective in treating mood and anxiety disorders. This narrative review article demonstrates the development of EPP, the therapeutic methodology, evidence-based accounts of its curative techniques, current understanding of mood and anxiety disorders in neurological science, and a possible converging path to translate and integrate meaning-centered psychotherapy and neurological science, concluding that the existential phenomenological psychotherapy potently plays a synergistic role with the currently prevailing medication-based approaches for the treatment of mood and anxiety disorders.
Tue, 16 February 2021
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: Nutritional Psychiatry; Mental Health Professionals; Psychiatrists; Psychologists; Psychotherapists; Education; Psychiatric Disorders; Diet; Supplements; Nutrition
Online: 16 February 2021 (13:36:58 CET)
Abstract: Nutritional interventions have beneficial effects on certain psychiatric disorder symptomatology and common physical health comorbidities. However, studies evaluating nutritional literacy in mental health professionals (MHP) are scarce. This study aimed to assess the degree of self-rated training and literacy relating to nutrition in MHPs. We conducted a cross-sectional survey across 52-countries. Surveys were distributed via colleagues and professional societies. Data were collected regarding self-reported general nutrition knowledge, nutrition education, learning opportunities, and the tendency to recommend food supplements or specific diets in clinical practice. In total, 1056 subjects participated in the study: 354 psychiatrists, 511 psychologists, 44 psychotherapists, and 147 MHPs in-training. All participants believed the diet quality of individuals with mental disorders was poorer compared to the general population (p<0.001). The majority of the psychiatrists (74.2%) and psychologists (66.3%) reported having no training in nutrition. Nevertheless, many of them used nutrition approaches, with 58.6% recommending supplements and 43.8% recommending specific diet strategies to their patients. Only 0.8% of participants rated their education regarding nutrition as ‘very good’. Almost all (92.9%) stated they would like to expand their knowledge regarding ‘Nutritional Psychiatry’. There is an urgent need to integrate nutrition education into MHP training, ideally in collaboration with nutrition experts to achieve best practice care.
Mon, 8 February 2021
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202102.0194.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: COVID-19; health care workers; Greece; mental health; depression; anxiety; traumatic stress; burnout
Online: 8 February 2021 (11:41:59 CET)
COVID-19 pandemic has the potential to adversely affect the mental health of healthcare workers (HCWs). The public healthcare system in Greece was already facing serious challenges at the outset of the outbreak following years of austerity and an escalating refugee crisis. The multi-center, cross-sectional study aims to assess the levels and associated risk factors of anxiety, depression, traumatic stress and burnout of frontline staff in Greece. A total of 464 HCWs in six reference hospitals completed a self-administered questionnaire comprising of sociodemographic and work-related information and psychometric scales. The proportion of HCWs with symptoms of moderate/severe depression, anxiety and traumatic stress were 30%, 25% and 33% respectively. Burnout levels were particularly high with 65% of respondents scoring moderate/severe in Emotional Exhaustion, 92% severe in Depersonalization and 51% low/moderate in Personal Accomplishment. Predictive factors of adverse psychological outcomes included fear, perceived stress, risk of infection, lack of protective equipment and low social support. The psychological burden associated with Covid-19 in healthcare professionals in Greece is considerable with more than half experiencing at least mild mental health difficulties. Findings signal the need for immediate organizational and individually tailored interventions to enhance resilience and support wellbeing under pandemic conditions.
Fri, 8 January 2021
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202101.0087.v2
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: depression; metabolic syndrome; non-alcoholic fatty liver disease; hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis; inflammation; oxidative stress; microbiota
Online: 8 January 2021 (10:16:21 CET)
Metabolic disorders, metabolic syndrome and non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, and depression are those of the most common and debilitating disorders worldwide that often coexist further increasing mortality risks. Although the exact mechanisms underlying this association are poorly known, several hypotheses have been proposed: antipsychotic medication and antidepressants use, diet and physical activity or any other lifestyle factors. However, the high co-occurrence rate of depression and metabolic disorders suggests a possible pathophysiological overlap. In this paper I review several raised mechanisms for this overlap which are the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis dysregulation, immune alterations with chronic inflammation, as well as oxidative stress. In my view, there is one common thread running through all the aforementioned areas of pathophysiology which is microbiota alteration. So far, several possible interventions in our microbiota have been introduced into clinical practice - dietary and other lifestyle changes, supplementation with prebiotics or probiotics, fecal microbiota transplantation – but with vague indications. A better characterization of the above associations may represent a critical step at phenotyping, and a more targeted approach to the treatment of both depressive and metabolic disorders. At the end of the paper, I give several practical applications for future studies.
Wed, 30 December 2020
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202012.0754.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: attitudes; depression; developing countries; medical education; mental health; psychosis; service users; stigma
Online: 30 December 2020 (14:12:49 CET)
This study evaluated the impact of didactic videos and service user testimonial videos on mental illness stigma among medical students. Two randomized controlled trials were conducted in Nepal. Study 1 examined stigma reduction for depression. Study 2 examined depression and psychosis. Participants were Nepali medical students (Study 1:n=94, Study 2:¬n=213) randomized to three conditions: a didactic video based on the mental health Gap Action Programme (mhGAP), a service user video about living with mental illness, or a control condition with no videos. In Study 1, videos only addressed depression. In Study 2, videos addressed depression and psychosis. In Study 1, both didactic and service user videos reduced stigma compared to the control (F2,91=6.37, p=0.003). In Study 2 (depression and psychosis), there were no differences among the three arms (F2,210=2.07, p=0.13). When comparing Study 1 and 2, there was greater stigma reduction in the service user video arm with only depression versus service user videos with depression and psychosis (t(31)=-3.04, p=0.005). In summary, didactic and service user videos were associated with decreased stigma when content addressed only depression. However, no stigma reduction was seen when including depression and psychosis. This calls for different strategies based on types of mental illnesses. ClinicalTrials.gov identifier: NCT03231761
Thu, 24 December 2020
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202012.0625.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: depression; anxiety disorders; existential psychotherapy; phenomenological psychotherapy; daseinsanalysis; logotherapy; meaning-centered psychotherapy; functional magnetic resonance imaging; biomarker; kynurenines; Martin Heidegger; Medard Boss; Ludwig Binswanger; Viktor Frankl
Online: 24 December 2020 (13:39:12 CET)
Psychotherapy is a comprehensive biological treatment modifying complex underlying cognitive, emotional, behavioral, and regulatory responses in the brain, leading patients with mental illness to a new interpretation of the sense of self and others. Psychotherapy is an art of science integrated with psychology and/or philosophy. Neuroscience is a multidisciplinary science of the neuron, the glial cells including oligodendrocytes, ependymal cells, and astrocytes and the neural circuits to understand learning, memory, behavior, perception, and consciousness. Both psychotherapy and neuroscience deal with the brain; nevertheless, they continue to stay polarized far. Existential phenomenological psychotherapy (EPP) has been in the forefront of meaning-centered counseling for almost a century. The phenomenological approach in psychotherapy originated in the works of Martin Heidegger, Ludwig Binswanger, Medard Boss and Viktor Frankl, and it has been committed to account for the existential possibilities and limitations of one’s life. EPP provides philosophically rich interpretations and empowers counseling techniques to assist mentally suffering individuals by finding meaning and purpose of life. The approach has proven to be effective in treating mood and anxiety disorders. This review article demonstrates the development of EPP, the therapeutic methodology, evidence-based accounts of its curative techniques, current understanding of mood and anxiety disorders in neuroscience, and a possible converging path to translate and integrate meaning-centered psychotherapy and neuroscience, concluding that the existential phenomenological approach in psychotherapy is a viable and potent alternative to the currently prevailing medication-based approaches.
Mon, 21 December 2020
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202012.0499.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: COVID-19; disaster preparedness; disaster response; natural disasters; community-based organizations
Online: 21 December 2020 (10:43:50 CET)
Background: This year has seen the emergence of two major crises, a significant increase in frequency and severity of hurricanes and the COVID-19 pandemic. However, little is known as to how each of these two events have impacted the other. A rapid qualitative assessment was conducted to determine the impact of the pandemic on preparedness and response to natural disasters and the impact of past experiences with natural disasters in responding to the pandemic. Methods: Semi-structured interviews were conducted with 26 representatives of 24 different community-based programs in southern Louisiana. Data were analyzed using procedures embedded in the Rapid Assessment Procedure – Informed Community Ethnography methodology, using techniques of immersion and crystallization and focused thematic analysis. Results: The pandemic has impacted the form and function of disaster preparedness, making it harder to plan for evacuations in event of a hurricane. Specific concerns included being able to see people in-person, providing food and other resources to residents who shelter in place, finding volunteers to assist in food distribution and other forms of disaster response, competing for funds to support disaster-related activities, developing new support infrastructures, and focusing on equity in disaster preparedness. However, several strengths based on disaster preparedness experience and capabilities were identified, including providing a framework for how to respond and adapt to COVID and integration of COVID response with their normal disaster preparedness activities. Conclusions: Although prior experience has enabled community-based organizations to respond to the pandemic, the pandemic is also creating new challenges to preparing for and responding to natural disasters.
Mon, 9 November 2020
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202009.0724.v2
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: clozapine; schizophrenia; early-onset; pregnancy; bipolar affective disorder; agranulocytosis; COVID-19; pharmacogenetic
Online: 9 November 2020 (11:48:29 CET)
Background: Clozapine (CLZ) use is precarious due to its neurological, cardiovascular, and hematological side effects; however, it is the gold standard in therapy-resistant schizophrenia (TRS) in adults and is underused. Objective: to examine the most recent CLZ data on (a) side effects concerning (b) recent pharmacological mechanisms, (c) therapy benefits, and (d) the particularities of the COVID-19 pandemic. Data sources: a search was performed in two databases (PubMed and Web of Science) using the specific keywords "clozapine" and "schizophrenia," "side effects," "agranulocytosis," "TRS," or "bipolar affective disorder (BAF)" for the last ten years. Study eligibility criteria: clinical trials on adults with acute symptoms of schizophrenia or related disorders. Results: We selected 37 studies, randomized controlled trials (RCTs), and clinical case series (CCS), centered on six main topics in the search area: (a) CLZ in schizophrenia, (b) CLZ in bipolar disorder, (c) side effects during the clozapine therapy, (d) CLZ in pregnancy, (e) CLZ in early-onset schizophrenia, and (f) CLZ therapy and COVID-19 infection. Limitations: We considered RCTs and CCS from two databases, limited to the search topics. Conclusions and implications of key findings: (a) Clozapine doses should be personalized for each patient based on pharmacogenetics testing when available; the genetic vulnerability postulates predictors of adverse reactions' severity; patients with a lower genetic risk could have less frequent hematological monitoring; (b) CLZ-associated risk of pulmonary embolism imposes prophylactic measures for venous thromboembolism; (c) convulsive episodes are not an indication for stopping treatment; the plasma concentration of clozapine is a better side effect predictor than the dosage; (d) COVID-19 infection may enhance clozapine toxicity, generating an increased risk of pneumonia. Therapy must be continued with proper monitoring of the white blood count, and the clozapine dose decreased by half until three days after the fever breaks; psychiatrists and healthcare providers must act together. Background: Clozapine (CLZ) use is precarious due to its neurological, cardiovascular, and hematological side effects; however, it is the gold standard in therapy-resistant schizophrenia (TRS) in adults and is underused. Objective: to examine the most recent CLZ data on (a) side effects concerning (b) recent pharmacological mechanisms, (c) therapy benefits, and (d) the particularities of the COVID-19 pandemic. Data sources: a search was performed in two databases (PubMed and Web of Science) using the specific keywords "clozapine" and "schizophrenia," "side effects," "agranulocytosis," "TRS," or "bipolar affective disorder (BAF)" for the last ten years. Study eligibility criteria: clinical trials on adults with acute symptoms of schizophrenia or related disorders. Results: We selected 37 studies, randomized controlled trials (RCTs), and clinical case series (CCS), centered on six main topics in the search area: (a) CLZ in schizophrenia, (b) CLZ in bipolar disorder, (c) side effects during the clozapine therapy, (d) CLZ in pregnancy, (e) CLZ in early-onset schizophrenia, and (f) CLZ therapy and COVID-19 infection. Limitations: We considered RCTs and CCS from two databases, limited to the search topics. Conclusions and implications of key findings: (a) Clozapine doses should be personalized for each patient based on pharmacogenetics testing when available; the genetic vulnerability postulates predictors of adverse reactions' severity; patients with a lower genetic risk could have less frequent hematological monitoring; (b) CLZ-associated risk of pulmonary embolism imposes prophylactic measures for venous thromboembolism; (c) convulsive episodes are not an indication for stopping treatment; the plasma concentration of clozapine is a better side effect predictor than the dosage; (d) COVID-19 infection may enhance clozapine toxicity, generating an increased risk of pneumonia. Therapy must be continued with proper monitoring of the white blood count, and the clozapine dose decreased by half until three days after the fever breaks; psychiatrists and healthcare providers must act together.
Mon, 19 October 2020
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202010.0375.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: hope; mental health; reliability; validity; principal component analysis; schizophrenia
Online: 19 October 2020 (11:18:42 CEST)
Hope is important in the rehabilitation of persons with schizophrenia, through scales to measure hope are not appropriate for this population. The purpose of this cross-sectional study was to identify the psychometric properties of the Schizophrenia Hope Scale-9 (SHS-9) using data from 83 people with schizophrenia in four mental health centers and 762 healthy persons from two universities in South Korea. The mean (standard deviation) SHS-9 score of the participants with schizophrenia and healthy participants was 11.24 (4.90) and 14.83 (3.10), respectively. Lower scores indicate a lower level of hope. The internal consistency alpha coefficient was 0.92 with a 4-week test-retest reliability of 0.89. Criterion-related construct validity was established by examining the correlation between the SHS-9 and the State-Trait Hope Inventory scores. Divergent validity was identified through a negative relationship of SHS-9 with the Beck Hopelessness Scale. The construct validity of the SHS-9 was confirmed through principal component analysis with extraction methods, which resulted in a one-factor solution, accounting for 49–60% of the total item variance.. This study provided evidence for the validity and reliability of the SHS-9; therefore, it could be used to measure hope in people with schizophrenia.
Sat, 26 September 2020
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202009.0619.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: COVID-19 Mexico; stress in healthcare professionals; COVID-19 stress scale
Online: 26 September 2020 (08:07:00 CEST)
The world is currently, subjected to the worst health crisis documented in modern history; an epidemic led by the novel coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). At the epicenter of this crisis, healthcare professionals continue working to safeguard our well-being. To the regular high levels of stress, COVID new heights even more to healthcare professionals so depending on the area, specialty, and type of work. Here we investigated what are the tendencies, or areas most affected. Through an adaptation of the original COVID-stress scale, we developed a remote, fast test designed for healthcare professionals of the Northeastern part of Mexico, an important part of the country with economic and cultural ties to the US. Our results showed 4 key correlations as highly dependent: Work area – Xenophobia (p < 0.045), Work with COVID patients - Traumatic stress (p < 0.001) and Total number of COVID patients per day – Traumatic stress (p < 0.027), and Total number of COVID patients - Compulsive checking and reassurance. Overall concluding that normal levels of stress have increased (mild – moderate). Additionally, we further determine that the fear of being an asymptomatic patient (potential to spread without knowing) continues being a concern.
Fri, 18 September 2020
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202009.0417.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: schizophrenia; stress; drug policy; environment; contaminants; pesticides; fungi; prohibition
Online: 18 September 2020 (04:21:43 CEST)
Background: Most modern studies about human marijuana use have been made under a set of arbitrary cultural standards and policies not related to drug harm potential, loosely called Prohibition. Here we asked if potential health hazards generated by Prohibition are addressed in research design and analysis. Methods: For this, we have searched PubMed database (from inception to December 2017) for citations of prevalent contaminants of illegal street cannabis: fungi and pesticides. In addition, we performed full text evaluation of 23 studies selected from, and including, 2 meta-analysis reviews investigating potential health hazards from cannabis use. Results: Different combinations of the keywords cannabis, prohibition, pesticides, fungi, contaminants, cancer, schizophrenia, psychosis, show that these words coincide in less than 1% of the cannabis human studies within the database. In the scope of 141 abstracts in which the terms, cannabis and pesticides coincide, none is directed to distinguish cannabis and pesticide adverse effects on CNS. A similar picture emerges when fungi is the paired word. Full text evaluation shows that all but one of the studies analyzed, completely neglect or comment on the nature of cannabis source, legal status, or contamination as a confounding factor. Discussion: Our results show a potential bias on scientific investigation that may affect data reliability in informing about the health hazards of cannabis use. This finding suggests that other aspects of the Prohibition environment may also go unacknowledged. Conclusion: Prohibition related health risks usually go unacknowledged and unaccounted for in biomedical research on Cannabis.
Wed, 16 September 2020
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202009.0347.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: mood disorders; depression; nitrosative and oxidative stress; IgM autoimmunity; neuro-immune; inflammation
Online: 16 September 2020 (04:17:25 CEST)
Major depression is accompanied by increased IgM-mediated autoimmune responses to oxidative specific epitopes (OSEs). Nevertheless, these responses have not been examined in bipolar disorder type 1 (BP1) and BP2. IgM responses to malondialdehyde (MDA), phosphatidinylinositol, oleic acid, and azelaic acid were determined in 35 healthy controls, and 101 mood disorder patients, namely 47 major depressed (MDD), 29 BP1, and 25 BP2 patients. We also measured serum total peroxides, IgG to oxidized LDL (oxLDL), IgM to nitroso-adducts, and IgM/IgA directed to lipopolysaccharides (LPS). IgM responses to OSEs were significantly higher in MDD and BP1 as compared with controls and higher in MDD than in BP2. Partial Least Squares (PLS) analysis showed that 57.7% of the variance in the clinical phenome of mood disorders was explained by number of episodes, IgM directed to OSEs and nitroso-adducts, IgG to oxLDL, and peroxides. There were significant specific indirect effects of IgA/IgM to LPS on the clinical phenome, which were mediated by peroxides, IgM OSEs, and IgG oxLDL. Using PLS we have constructed a data-driven nomothetic network which ensembled causome (increased plasma LPS load), adverse outcome pathways (namely neuro-affective toxicity), and clinical phenome features of mood disorders in a data-driven model. Based on those feature sets, cluster analysis discovered a new diagnostic class characterized by increased plasma LPS load, peroxides, autoimmune responses to OSEs and nitroso-adducts, and increased phenome scores. Using the new nomothetic network approach, we constructed a mechanistically transdiagnostic diagnostic class indicating neuro-affective toxicity in 74.3% of the mood disorder patients.
Mon, 7 September 2020
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202009.0159.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: Nicotine; Cotinine; Corticosterone; LCMS; Sex; C57BL/6J mouse; CYP2A5; Plasma Levels; Subcutaneous Injection
Online: 7 September 2020 (08:08:54 CEST)
We assessed if there were any sex-related differences in the ability of nicotine to increase plasma corticosterone secretion after single or repeated nicotine administration. For single-dose studies, male and female mice were habituated to the test room for 1 h and injected with saline or nicotine (0.25 or 1 mg/kg, s.c.). In repeated-dosing studies, mice were injected with saline or nicotine (1 mg/kg, s.c.) once daily for six days, and, on day 7, received nicotine (1 mg/kg, s.c.). The mice were euthanized 15 min later, and trunk blood was collected for the measurement of corticosterone, nicotine, and cotinine. Our results showed that saline or nicotine each significantly increased plasma corticosterone levels in both male and female mice, with a greater response in female mice. Plasma corticosterone levels were increased in male but not female mice after repeated compared to single nicotine administration. The level of cotinine, a biomarker of nicotine use, was significantly higher in female than in male mice. Taken together, these novel findings suggest that female mice responded to nicotine and stress of handling more than male mice and provide for the first-time quantitative data on the male-female differences in nicotine-induced elevations of corticosterone and of cotinine.
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: Disabled Persons; Health Status; Iran; Psychometrics; Quality of Life; Reliability
Online: 7 September 2020 (03:24:54 CEST)
Aim: The aim of this study was to assess the performance of the SF-36 health survey (SF-36) in a sample of subjects with physical disabilities. Material and Methods: 305 patients recruited using the convenient sampling method from September 2019 to March 2020 in Kermanshah, Iran. Another similar 300 patients were selected to assess the confirmatory factor analysis (CFA). Results: The Cronbach’s α ranged from 0.70 to 0.93, and intra-class correlation coefficients from 0.71 to 0.88; and with the no ceiling and floor effect for two main subscales. Convergent validity was supported by moderate to good correlation between SF-36 subscales and Moorong self-efficacy subscales (r= 0.25- 0.53). The SF-36 divergently validated with HADS total score and subscales (r= -0.24- -0.65), concurrently validated with its subscales (r=0.49- 0.88), and physically discriminated between persons with different level of disability (t-test: p<0.001). Factorial analysis identified seven factors, confirmed with second-order in another 300 samples (chi-square (χ2/df) = 2.61(p < .001); RMSEA = 0.07 (90% CI = 0.07–0.08); AGFI=0.75; GFI = 0.78; CFI= 0.85; and NFI = 0.78). Conclusions: the SF-36 is a reliable and valid tool in physical disables. However, SF-36 shows insufficient eight-factor validity. Future studies should focus on evaluating other psychometric properties, such as sensitivity to change in subjects with physical disabilities.
Sun, 6 September 2020
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202009.0149.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: Smartphone Addiction; Middle School Students; Smartphone Usage Types; Depression; Parenting Attitude
Online: 6 September 2020 (16:27:01 CEST)
The purpose of this study was to examine the relationships between smartphone addiction of middle school students and smartphone usage types, depression, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), stress, interpersonal problems, and parenting attitude. This study was also performed with the aim of verifying the relationships among depression, ADHD, perceived stress, interpersonal problems, and parenting attitude, which are predictors of smartphone addiction. The subjects of this study were 487 local middle school students (234 males and 253 females). The measurement instruments used were the smartphone addiction scale, depression scale (PHQ-9), ADHD scale (K-ARS), perceived stress scale (PSS), interpersonal problem scale (KIIP-SC), and the parenting attitude scale. This study identified the relationships between the variables with correlation analysis and examined the predictors of smartphone addiction with hierarchical multiple regression analysis. According to the study results, the factors that influenced smartphone addiction were gender, stress, and interpersonal problems. In addition, when the confounding variables of smartphone addiction were controlled to examine the effects of smartphone usage types on smartphone addiction, social media use and music/videos were found to have a positively significant effect on smartphone addiction while study had a negatively significant effect. The order of the usage types with the highest influence on smartphone addiction was enjoying music/videos, social media use, and study. This suggests that selective intervention depending on the main smartphone usage type can be effective.
Thu, 3 September 2020
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202009.0053.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: unstable angina, inflammation, neuro-immune, major depression, oxidative stress, antioxidants, atherogenicity
Online: 3 September 2020 (04:40:27 CEST)
Background. There is strong comorbidity between atherosclerosis (ATS) and depression which is attributed to increased atherogenicity, insulin resistance (IR), and immune and oxidative stress.Aim of the study. To examine the role of the above pathways and mu opioid receptor (MOR), β-endorphin, zinc, copper, vitamin D3, calcium, and magnesium in depression due to ATS / unstable angina (UA).Methods. Biomarkers were assayed in 58 controls and 120 ATS patients divided into those with moderate and severe depression according to the Beck Depression Inventory (BDI)-II score > 19 and > 29, respectively. Results. Neural network and logistic regression models showed that severe depression due to ATS/UA was best predicted by IL-6, UA, MOR, zinc, β-endorphin, calcium and magnesium and that moderate depression was associated with IL-6, zinc, MOR, β-endorphin, UA, atherogenicity, IR, and calcium. These neural networks yielded a significant discrimination of severe and moderate depression with an area under the ROC curve of 0.831 and 0.931, respectively. Using Partial Least Squares analysis, 66.2% of the variance in a latent vector extracted from the ATS/UA clinical features, BDI-II scores, atherogenicity, and IR could be explained by the regression on IL-6, IL-10, zinc, copper, calcium, MOR, and age. The BDI-II scores increased from controls to ATS to UA class III to UA class IV.Conclusions. Depression due to ATS/UA is a reflective manifestation of increased atherogenicity and IR, which are modulated by immune activation, aberrations in the endogenous opioid system, antioxidants, trace elements, and macrominerals.
Mon, 31 August 2020
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202008.0709.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: COVID-19; lockdown; psychological impacts; self-harm; suicide; COVID-19 suicide; teenage suicide; adolescent suicide; youth suicide; press reporting suicide
Online: 31 August 2020 (05:43:25 CEST)
Background: The incidences of COVID-19 related suicide among adolescents and youths have been reported across the world. There is no cumulative study focusing on nature, patterns, and causative factors that lead to the present investigation. Methods: A purposive sampling of google news between 15 February to 6 July was performed. After excluding duplicate reports, the final list comprised a total of 37-suicide cases across 11 countries. Results: More male suicides were reported (21-cases, i.e., 56.76%), and the mean age of the total victims was 16.6±2.7 years (out of a total of 29-cases). About two-thirds of the suicides were from three countries named India (11-cases), United Kingdom (8-cases), and the USA (6-cases). Out of 23-student victims, 14 were school-going students. Hanging was the most common suicide method accounting in 51.4% of cases. The most common suicide causalities were related to mental sufferings such as depression, loneliness, psychological distress, etc., whereas either online schooling or overwhelming academic distress was placed as the second most risk factors followed by TikTok addiction-related psychological distress, and tested with COVID-19. Conclusion: The finding of the temporal distribution of suicides concerning lockdowns may help in exploring and evolving public measures to prevent/decrease pandemic-related suicides in young people.
Thu, 27 August 2020
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202008.0606.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: life satisfaction; depression; self-esteem; stigma; out of school youth; structural equation modeling
Online: 27 August 2020 (09:02:07 CEST)
The purpose of this study was to assess the extent to which self-esteem and depression mediated the influence of internalized stigma on life satisfaction among Korean out-of-school youths. Cross-sectional data on 318 youths provided information on perceived stigma, self-esteem, depression, life satisfaction, and personal characteristics. A multinomial logistic regression analysis was followed by structured path analysis to investigate the mediation effects. Internalized stigma was negatively associated with life satisfaction. Self-esteem significantly mediated the influence of stigma on depression and the influence of depression on life satisfaction. Further, stigma directly and significantly influenced depression. This study demonstrated that self-esteem and depression were important to the relationship between internalized stigma and life satisfaction. Implications for possible policies and programs with the aim of helping out-of-school youths to integrate and lead successful satisfying lives are discussed.
Thu, 20 August 2020
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202008.0431.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: depressive disorder; omega-3 fatty acids; lipid profile; fluidity of membrane; children and adolescents
Online: 20 August 2020 (05:48:48 CEST)
Depressive disorder (DD) is a psychiatric disorder whose molecular basis is not fully understood. It is assumed that reduced consumption of fish and omega-3 fatty acids (FA) is associated with DD. Other lipids like total cholesterol (TCH), LDL- and HDL-cholesterols (LDL-CH, HDL-CH) also play a role in depression. This study aimed to investigate the relationship between depressive disorder symptoms and lipid profile, LDL- and HDL-cholesterol subfractions, Paraoxonase 1 (PON1) activities and erythrocyte membrane fluidity in 58 depressive children and adolescents, as well as the effect of omega-3 FA on the monitored parameters. Depressive symptoms were assessed by the Children's Depression Inventory (CDI), lipid profile by standard biochemical procedures, LDL- and HDL-subfractions by the Lipoprint system. Basic biochemical parameters including lipid profile were compared with levels in 20 healthy children and were in the physiological range. We are the first to report that omega-3 FAs increase after 12 weeks of supplementation large HDL subfractions (anti-atherogenic) and decrease small HDL subfractions (pro-atherogenic) in depressed children. We found a negative correlation between CDI score and HDL-CH and large HDL subfraction, but not LDL-CH subfractions. CDI score was not associated with erythrocyte membrane fluidity. Our results suggest that HDL-CH and its subfractions, but not LDL-CH may play a role in the pathophysiology of depressive disorder.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202008.0421.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: deficit schizophrenia; cytokines; inflammation; neuro-immune; oxidative stress; leaky gut
Online: 20 August 2020 (03:24:47 CEST)
Current case definitions of schizophrenia (DSM-5, ICD), made through a consensus among experts, are not cross-validated and lack construct reliability validity. The aim of this paper is to explain how to use bottom-up pattern recognition approaches to construct a reliable and replicable nomothetic network reflecting the direct effects of risk resilience (RR) factors, and direct and mediated effects of both RR and adverse outcome pathways (AOPs) on the schizophrenia phenome. This study was conducted using data of 40 healthy controls and 80 patients with schizophrenia. Using partial least Squares (PLS) analysis, we found that 39.7% of the variance in the phenomenome (lowered self-reported quality of life) was explained by the unified effects of AOPs (IgA to tryptophan catabolites, LPS, and the paracellular pathway, cytokines, and oxidative stress biomarkers), the cognitome (memory and executive deficits), and symptomatome (negative symptoms, psychosis, hostility, excitation, mannerism, psychomotor retardation, formal thought disorders); 55.8% of the variance in the symptomatome was explained by a single trait extracted from AOPs and the cognitome; and 22.0% of the variance in the latter was explained by the RR (Q192R polymorphism and CMPAaase activity, natural IgM, and IgM levels to zonulin). There were significant total effects (direct + mediated) of RR and AOPs on the symptomatome and phenomenome. In the current study, we built a reliable nomothetic network that reflects the associations between RR, AOPs, and the phenome of schizophrenia and discovered new diagnostic subclasses of schizophrenia based on unified RR, AOPs, and phenome scores.
Sat, 15 August 2020
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202008.0342.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: COVID-19 pandemic; virus’ transmission; fear of contagion; breathing difficulty; healthy adolescents; emotion awareness; anxiety-state
Online: 15 August 2020 (08:25:22 CEST)
The COVID-19 appears as a catastrophic health risk with psychological, emotional, social and relational implications. From the early stages of the virus spread, the elderly population was identified as the most vulnerable and the health authorities have rightly focused on such frailest population. Conversely, less attention was paid to emotional and psychological dimension of children and adolescents. Actually, they were less at risk quoad vitam or quoad valetudinem, nevertheless they had to face a reality of anxiety, fears and uncertainties. The current study investigated state anxiety and emotion awareness in a healthy sample of older adolescents, 84 females and 64 males, aged 17 to 19, during the pandemic lockdown, using Self-rating Anxiety Scale and the Italian Emotion Awareness Questionnaire. An unexpected anxious phenomenology, impacting the anxiety ideo-affective domain, was found, while the somatic symptomatology appeared to be less severe. The highest anxiety symptom were the breathing difficulties. These findings supported the hypothesis that the COVID-19 pandemic may be a risk condition for an increased state anxiety in older adolescents and suggest the need to provide 1. an effective, empathic communication system with the direct participation of older adolescents, 2. a psychological counseling service for stress management of adolescents.
Sat, 8 August 2020
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202008.0207.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: Social Anxiety Disorder; Social Phobia, Online Survey; Adult, Oman; Liebowitz Social Anxiety Scale
Online: 8 August 2020 (09:39:49 CEST)
Background: Social Anxiety Disorder (SAD) is among the most common anxiety disorders worldwide with data largely emerging from the Euro-American and Pacific Rim populations. In contrast, there is a dearth of studies among the populations of Arabian Gulf countries including Oman. This study has two interrelated aims: (i) to explore the prevalence of SAD among Omani adults, and (ii) to tease out the links between sociodemographic factors and SAD in Oman. Methods: A cross-sectional study via an online survey was conducted among 1019 adult Omani nationals residing in Oman. The presence of SAD was assessed using the Arabic version of the Liebowitz Social Anxiety Scale (LSAS). Result: Nearly half the participants (45.9%, n=468) endorsed themselves as having features of SAD as defined by LSAS. In the multivariate logistic analysis, participants below 40 years of age were 1.6 times (OR=1.568, p=0.026) more likely to have SAD than those who were 40 and older. Women were 1.3 times (OR=1.348, p=0.038) more likely to endorse SAD than men. Participants who had secondary or undergraduate education were respectively 1.5 times (OR=1.45, p=0.014) and 2.5 times (OR=2.509, p<.001) to have SAD than who were postgraduates. Conclusion: The present data suggest that 45.9% of the participants reached the cut-off for case-ness in LSAS, which is high compared to reports from other populations. As online survey respondents tend to belong to similar demographics, the current results need not be representative of the Omani adult population, which calls for studies that adopt more inclusive survey methods.
Mon, 3 August 2020
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202008.0070.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: digital devices; digital media; toddler; children; language abilities
Online: 3 August 2020 (11:39:57 CEST)
Background: Over the past decade, the use of digital tools has grown and research evidence suggests that traditional media and new media offer both benefits and health risks for young children. The abilities to understand and use language represent two of the most important competencies developed during the first 3 years of life through the interaction of the child with people, objects, events, and other environmental factors. The main goal of our study is to evaluate the relationship between digital devices use and language abilities in children between 8-36 month, considering also the influence of several variables. Materials and Methods: We conducted a cross-sectional observational study on 260 healthy children (140 males = 54%) aged between 8-36 months (mean=23.5±7.18 months). All the parents completed a self-report questionnaire investigating the use of digital devices by their children, and a standardized questionnaire for the assessment of language skills (MacArthur). Multiple linear regression was used to evaluate the relationship between different variables. Subsequent moderation analysis were performed to verify the influence of other factors. Results: W found a statistically significant negative correlation between the total daily time of exposure to digital devices and the Actions and Gestures Quotient (ß=-0.397) in children between 8-17 months, and between the total daily time of exposure to digital devices and Language Quotient (ß=-0.224) in children between 18-36 months. Sex, level of education/job of parents, modality of use/content of digital device do not significantly affect these relationships. Conclusion: In our study we found that a longer time of exposure to digital devices was related to lower mimic-gestural skills in children from 8-17 months and to lower language skills in children between 18-36 months, regardless of age, sex, socio-economic status, content and modality of use. Further studies are needed to confirm and better understand this relationship, but parents and pediatricians are advised to limit the use of digital devices by children and encourage the social interaction to support the learning of language and communication skills in this age group.
Fri, 31 July 2020
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202007.0737.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: oxidative stress; redox; antioxidant; multiple sclerosis; biomarker; neurodegenerative disease; personalized medicine
Online: 31 July 2020 (08:40:46 CEST)
Worldwide, over 2.2 million people are suffered from multiple sclerosis (MS), a multifactorial demyelinating disease of the central nervous system, characterized by multifocal inflammatory or demyelinating attacks associated with neuroinflammation and neurodegeneration. The blood, cerebrospinal fluid, and postmortem brain samples of MS patients evidenced the presence of reduction-oxidation (redox) homeostasis disturbance such as the alternations of oxidative and antioxidative enzyme activities and the presence of degradation products. This review article discussed the components of redox homeostasis including reactive chemical species, oxidative enzymes, antioxidative enzymes, and degradation products. The reactive chemical species covered frequently discussed reactive oxygen/nitrogen species, rarely featured reactive chemicals such as sulfur, carbonyls, halogens, selenium, and nucleophilic species that potentially act as reductive as well as pro-oxidative stressors. The antioxidative enzyme systems covered the nuclear factor erythroid-2-related factor 2 (NRF2)-Kelch-like ECH-associated protein 1 (KEAP1) signaling pathway, a possible biomarker sensitive to the initial phase of oxidative stress. Altered components of the redox homeostasis in MS were discussed, some of which turned to be MS subtype- or treatment-specific and thus potentially become diagnostic, prognostic, predictive, and/or therapeutic biomarkers. Finally, monitoring a battery of redox components including oxidative, antioxidative and degradation products helps evaluate the redox status of MS patients, which expedites prolongation of remission, relapse prevention, and building personalized treatment plans.
Sun, 26 July 2020
BRIEF REPORT | doi:10.20944/preprints202007.0636.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: Autism Spectrum Disorder; Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder; Behavioural Neuroscience; Mental Health; COVID-19; Pandemic; Paediatric Neurology
Online: 26 July 2020 (15:31:51 CEST)
Children and young people (CYP) with neurodevelopmental disorders (NDDs) may be particularly vulnerable to adverse mental health effects due to the COVID-19 pandemic. We conducted a cross-sectional U.K parent-reported study from 2nd April-2nd June 2020, using the Strengths & Difficulties Questionnaire. CYP with NDDs (n=371) compared to neurotypical controls, had a higher prevalence of emotional symptoms (42% vs 15%), conduct problems (28% vs 9%), and lower prosocial behaviours (54% vs 22%). Those with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder showed inflated conduct, and those with autism spectrum disorder exhibited decreased prosocial behaviours. Females with ASD had higher emotional symptoms compared to males.
Wed, 22 July 2020
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202005.0346.v2
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: mental health; COVID-19; school-going children; lockdown
Online: 22 July 2020 (07:43:01 CEST)
During this epidemic of COVID-19, children are in need of much concentration and profound love of the senior family members. Although the measures taken by the organizations are necessary to prevent the spread of the novel coronavirus, they may be causing widespread mental health issues, including depression and loneliness. Therefore, it is imperative that parents have to spend the lion-share of time with children while listening to them cordially. Parents can participate in sports with them to help them stay fit so that they can enjoy commemorating moments. However, in this additional time, the parents can also make them habituated to practice the rules of health, so does social distancing.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202007.0499.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: adolescents; cannabis; cognition; working memory; executive functions
Online: 22 July 2020 (05:42:03 CEST)
The developmental phase of adolescence is characterized by a multitude of neurocognitive and psychosocial changes and is therefore considered one of the most critical developmental periods of life. Experimentation on the use of substances often begins in adolescence and so does the addiction process. Most research in human subjects shows that chronic cannabis abuse is the cause of the impairment of some cognitive functions, affecting the performance on divided attention, verbal memory and working memory. In this study, we wanted to investigate how the abuse of cannabis (chronic, occasional and absence use) can influence global cognitive functioning, also through executive functions. From the statistical analyzes of our study, it emerges that the group of subjects who use chronic cannabis (group 1) has a significant drop in working memory tasks compared to the group that does not use it (group 3). In addition, the goal of future studies by our group is to verify the permanent alteration of cognitive processes affected through revaluations with calendar follow-up (controlled).
Sun, 19 July 2020
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202007.0425.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: autism spectrum disorder; neuroinflammation; kynurenine pathway; microglia; oxidative stress; mitochondrial disorder; immune deregulation; QUIN (quinolinic acid); KYNA (kynurenic acid); tryptophan catabolites
Online: 19 July 2020 (19:19:31 CEST)
Autism Spectrum Disorder etiopathogenesis is still unclear and no effective preventive and treatment measures have been identified. Research has focused on the potential role of neuroinflammation and kynurenine pathway. Here we review the nature of these interactions. Pre-natal or neonatal infections would induce microglial activation, with secondary consequences on behavior, cognition and neurotransmitter networks. Peripherally, higher levels of pro-inflammatory cytokines and anti-brain antibodies have been identified. Increased frequency of autoimmune diseases, allergies, and recurring infections have been demonstrated both in autistic patients and in their relatives. Genetic studies, also, have identified some important polymorphisms in chromosome loci related to human leukocyte antigen (HLA) system. The persistence of immune-inflammatory deregulation would lead to mitochondrial dysfunction and oxidative stress, creating a self-sustaining cytotoxic loop. Chronic inflammation activates kynurenine pathway with increase in neurotoxic metabolites and excitotoxicity, causing long-term changes in glutamatergic system, trophic support and synaptic function. Furthermore, overactivation of kynurenine’s branch induces depletion of melatonin and serotonin worsening ASD symptoms. In this scenario, kynurenine pathway appears as a pharmacological target to treat and prevent ASD. Thus, in genetically predisposed subjects aberrant neurodevelopment may derives from a complex interplay between inflammatory process, mitochondrial dysfunction, oxidative stress and kynurenine pathway overexpression. To validate previous hypothesis a new translational research approach is necessary.
Fri, 17 July 2020
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202007.0373.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: autism spectrum disorder; cannabinoids; cannabidiol; cannabidivarin; THC; problem behaviors; sleep; epilepsy; side effects.
Online: 17 July 2020 (09:19:13 CEST)
The etiopathogenesis of autism spectrum disorder (ASD) remains largely unclear. Among other biological hypotheses, researchers have evidenced an imbalance in the endocannabinoid (eCB) system, which regulates some functions typically impaired in ASD, such as emotional responses and social interaction. Also, cannabidiol (CBD), the non-intoxicating component of Cannabis sativa, has been recently approved for treatment-resistant epilepsy. Seizures represent frequent medical comorbidities of ASD and could be responsible for the onset or worsening of behavioral problems. Thus, it has been hypothesized that cannabinoids could be useful in improving some ASD symptoms. Our systematic review was conducted according to the PRISMA guidelines and aimed to summarize the literature regarding the use of cannabinoids in ASD. After searching in Web of KnowledgeTM, PsycINFO, and Embase, we included ten studies (eight papers and two abstracts). Four ongoing trials were retrieved in ClinicalTrials.gov. Findings are promising, as cannabinoids appeared to improve problem behaviors, sleep, hyperactivity, and communication deficits, with limited cardiac and metabolic side effects. Interestingly, they generally allowed to reduce the number of prescribed medications and decreased the frequency of seizures in epileptic patients. Mechanisms of action could be linked to the excitatory/inhibitory imbalance found in people with ASD. However, further trials need to be implemented with better characterization and homogenization of samples, and well-defined outcomes.
Sun, 12 July 2020
CASE REPORT | doi:10.20944/preprints202007.0271.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: Covid-19; SARS-CoV-2; Attention; Variability of Reaction Time; Neuropsychology; Central Nervous System
Online: 12 July 2020 (18:42:14 CEST)
A 47-year-old physician suddenly noticed a persistent difficulty maintaining attention. He was awake, alert, and oriented. After two hours he developed fever, ageusia, and anosmia. He denied any previous history of psychiatric illness and was hydrated at the time of the subjective attention impairment. On admission, the patient remained oriented. He reported the persistence of attention problems, anosmia, and mild fatigue. The oxygen saturation 99% while he was breathing ambient air. Laboratory tests were unremarkable. A high-resolution computed tomography of the chest was normal. Nasopharyngeal and throat swabs specimens on reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction analysis tested positive for SARS-CoV2. On illness day 3, the examination was unchanged, but he continued to complain of difficulties to stay focused. Then, he performed an objective attention test. The test demonstrated a moderate attentional impairment. On day 6, the patient reported a subjective worse in his concentration and performed a second test. Although his physical examination remained normal, the attention performance was worse as compared to day 3. Eight hours after worsening of attention impairment, the patient’s oxygen saturation dropped to 94%. From illness days 9 to 14, the patient evolved with clinical improvement. On day 10, a third objective attention test indicated a mild deficit. On day 16, he did not report any other symptom and the attention test was completely normal. Then, the patient returned to work. Neurological symptoms had been previously described in COVID- 19 patients. However, no previous research had investigated early cognitive deficits preceding the traditional symptoms.
Tue, 7 July 2020
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202007.0111.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: disgust; DS-R; medical students; psychology students; academic orientation; specialization
Online: 7 July 2020 (08:08:20 CEST)
Disgust evolved as a way to protect one’s self from illness. DS-R measures disgust propensity of three kinds of disgust (Core, Animal Reminder and Contamination). Although the DS-R scale was refined mainly with young and largely female student population its impact on educational orientation has not been assessed. In the present study we examined the DS-R scoring and the choice of postgraduate studies in medical (n= 94) and psychology (n= 97) students. They responded to an anonymous web-based survey and completed the DS-R and a questionnaire on their demographics and plans for postgraduate studies. Female students outnumbered males (3:1) and scored higher in Total DS-R score (median: 59 vs. 50, p<0.05). Psychology students scored higher in all three kinds of disgust (p<0.05), indicating a higher level of disease avoidance. Medical students willing to follow Internal Medicine scored higher in Core Disgust (p<0.05) while psychology students willing to study Experimental Psychology scored lower in Animal Reminder subscale (p<0.001). Also, the higher the psychology students scored in Core Disgust scale the higher was the probability to choose Experimental Psychology. In conclusion, disgust propensity as rated by DS-R differentiates medical from psychology students and is also related to orientation preferences in postgraduate studies.
Sun, 5 July 2020
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202007.0045.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: Chronic hepatitis C; Direct-acting antiviral agents; Hepatitis C virus; Consultation-liaison psychiatry; Depression; Anxiety
Online: 5 July 2020 (05:15:08 CEST)
In chronic hepatitis C (CHC) patients, interferon-based treatments showed toxicity, limited efficacy, and psychiatric manifestations. Direct-acting antiviral (DAA) agents appeared safer, though it remains unclear if they may exacerbate or foster mood symptoms in drug-naïve CHC patients. We evaluated 62 CHC patients’ mental status, before and 12 weeks after DAA therapy, by assessment scales and psychometric instruments. We subdivided patients into two groups, CHC patients with (Group A) or without (Group B) a current and/or past psychiatric history. After DAA treatment, Group A patients showed low anxiety and improved depression, no variation in self-report distress, but worse general health perceptions. No significant difference emerged from coping strategies. Depression and anxiety improved in Group B, and no change emerged from total self-reported distress, except for somatization. Moreover, Group B increased problem-focused strategies for suppression of competing activities, and decreased strategies of instrumental social support. Contrarily, Group B reduced significantly emotion-focused strategies, such as acceptance and mental disengagement, and improved vitality, physical and social role functioning. DAA therapy is safe and free of hepatological and psychiatric side effects in CHC patients, regardless of current and/or past psychiatric history. In particular, patients without a psychiatric history also remarkably improved their quality of life.
Tue, 30 June 2020
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202006.0356.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: anxiety; depression; stress; coronavirus; Dilla; Ethiopia
Online: 30 June 2020 (08:00:58 CEST)
Background: The COVID-19 pandemic is the global public health emergency concern and had an impact on the day to day life of individuals. Its effect on an individual’s mental health is significant to the extent of suicide. Objective: This study aimed to assess the magnitude of psychological problems and their associated factor among communities living in Dilla town in response to the pandemic. Methods: From Apr 1- Apr 15, 2020, a community-based cross-sectional study was conducted using multi-stage sampling techniques. Self-administered the questioner, Depression, Anxiety and Stress Scale (DASS-21), and logistic regression analysis (95% CI, p-value <0.05) was used. Results: This study included 445 respondents with a 94% non- response rate who was living in Dilla town. In total, 34.4% of respondents had a psychological problem (11.4 % mild and 23% moderate level of the psychological problem). Female, Greater secondary level of education, monthly income below 500 ETB, more than three family size, and wearing face mask were variables associated with the outcome variable (p < 0.05). Conclusions: Nearly one-third of the respondents had mild to moderate psychological among communities living in Dilla town. There is a need for mental health support on those identified groups of peoples to enhance their resilience in response to the pandemic.
Thu, 18 June 2020
DATASET | doi:10.20944/preprints202006.0226.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: candidate-gene association; estimation; bias; confounding; case study
Online: 18 June 2020 (07:50:33 CEST)
Estimation of the reality can easily be flawed, hence, in order to result in accurate and useful estimates the process has to be protected from bias and confounding and should follow other methodological milestones inherent to different types of empirical observations. Candidate-gene association studies are a specific form of observations that have been rather extensively applied in psychiatry yielding valuable information on various aspects – when methodologically adequate and used in appropriate settings. However, certain flaws that may occur in such studies might not be bluntly obvious, at least not at first glance, and may pass unnoticed by researchers and reviewers. This case study uses two recent published candidate-gene association reports suggesting involvement of cannabinoid receptor type 1 and of heat shock protein single nucleotide polymorphisms in development of neurocognitive performance and psychopathology in a cohort of adult first episode psychosis patients to point-out the types of flaws inevitably resulting in inaccurate and useless estimates.
Tue, 16 June 2020
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202006.0202.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: transfusion-dependent thalassemia; depression; neuro-immune; inflammation; biomarkers; oxidative stress
Online: 16 June 2020 (08:51:33 CEST)
Transfusion dependent thalassemia (TDT) patients are treated with continued blood transfusions and show a higher prevalence of depression. TDT with consequent iron overload and inflammation is associated with increased severity of depressive symptoms in TDT children.Aim of the study: To construct a pathway-phenotype which combines iron overload and neuro-immune biomarkers with depressive symptom subdomains in TDT children.Methods: We measured iron status parameters (iron, ferritin, transferrin saturation percentage) and inflammatory (interleukin-1β and tumour necrosis factor-α) biomarkers in TDT (n=111) and healthy (n=53) children and analyzed the results using machine learning.Results: Cluster analysis separated TDT children with depression from those without depression and revealed two depressive subgroups one with low self-esteem and another with increased social-irritability scores. Exploratory factor analysis validated four depressive symptom dimensions as reliable constructs, namely key depressive, physiosomatic, lowered self-esteem and social-irritability dimensions. Partial Least Squares showed that 73.0% of the variance in a latent vector extracted from those four clinical subdomains, immune-inflammatory and iron overload biomarkers was explained by exposure variables including the number of blood transfusions and hospitalizations and use of deferoxamine. The exposure data, iron and immune biomarkers, and symptom subdomains are reflective manifestations of a single latent trait, which shows internal consistency reliability and predictive relevance.Conclusions: The nomological network combining exposure, pathways and behavioral phenome manifestations provides an index of overall severity and disease risk and, therefore, constitutes a new drug target, indicating that iron overload and immune activation should be targeted to treat depression due to TDT.
Tue, 9 June 2020
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202006.0124.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: therapeutic cannabis; cannabidiol; aromatherapy; NegEnt; Herbal Neurocare
Online: 9 June 2020 (13:44:33 CEST)
The article describes a research project that included the conception, development, testing and dissemination of a new drug, based on cannabidiol and called NegEnt (registered name and trademark).In this contribution, the author fully describes a new product for Aromatherapy that was developed and how it can be used for significant progress on various treatments for different conditions in psychiatry, neurology, and medicine. It also presents completed work for new herbal medicines at affordable costs worldwide.The clinical research program launched and the organizational and legal solutions identified are described to scientifically evaluate in accordance with a single case research study design. NegEnt's pharmacokinetics, bioavailability, pharmacodynamics, therapeutic efficacy, and tolerability is examined.In the last part of the article there is an outline of the project formulated for the development in Sicily in the province of Enna where NegEnt is produced in accordance with an innovative project of regional social promotion and based on the cultivation of cannabis Sativa Light, otherwise known as Progetto Demetra. This project established an operational module that is managed by a non-profit social enterprise called the Higher Institute for Cognitive Sciences, the ALETEIA LAB for Therapeutic cannabis, and as an ethical enterprise, which is called Herbal Neurocare (registered name and trademark). It contributes to improved health as well as promoting the economic and social development of this economically depressed area.
Fri, 5 June 2020
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202006.0058.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: depression; leaky gut; microbiota; cytokines; neuroimmunomodulation; oxidative stress; glia; blood-brain barrier; LPS; TLR
Online: 5 June 2020 (15:06:57 CEST)
In the last three decades, the robust scientific data emerged, demonstrating that the immune-inflammatory response is a fundamental component of the pathophysiology of major depressive disorder (MDD). Psychological stress and various inflammatory comorbidities contribute to such immune activation. Still, this is not uncommon that patients with depression do not have defined inflammatory comorbidities, and alternative mechanisms of immune activation need to take place. The gastrointestinal (GI) tract, along with gut-associated lymphoid tissue (GALT), constitutes the largest lymphatic organ in the human body and forms the biggest surface of contact with the external environment. It is also the most significant source of bacterial and food-derived antigenic material. There is a broad range of reciprocal interactions between the GI tract, intestinal microbiota, increased intestinal permeability, activation of immune-inflammatory response, and the CNS that has crucial implications in brain function and mental health. This intercommunication takes place within the microbiota-gut-immune-glia (MGIG) axis, and glial cells are the main orchestrator of this communication. A broad range of factors, including psychological stress, inflammation, dysbiosis and other, may compromise the permeability of this barrier. This leads to excessive bacterial translocation and the excessive influx of food-derived antigenic material that contributes to activation of the immune-inflammatory response and depressive psychopathology. This chapter summarizes the role of increased intestinal permeability in MDD and mechanisms of how the "leaky gut" may contribute to immune-inflammatory response in this disorder.
Wed, 3 June 2020
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202006.0008.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: 25-hydroxyvitamin D3; depression, anxiety; perceived stress; hostility
Online: 3 June 2020 (04:55:29 CEST)
We aimed to test the hypothesis that serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D3 [25(OH)D] concentration is associated with mental health and life stress measures in young adults, and investigate sex and racial disparities in these associations. This study comprised 327 black and white participants. Depression, trait anxiety, perceived stress, and hostility were measured by validated instruments: Beck Depression Inventory (BDI), State-Trait Anxiety Inventory (STAI), Perceived Stress Scale (PSS), and Cook-Medley Hostility Scale (CMHS). Linear regression was used to estimate correlations between serum 25(OH)D concentration and mental health measurements in total population and in subgroups stratified by sex and race. In this sample (28.2 ± 3.1 years, 48% male, 53% black), serum 25(OH)D concentration was negatively related to BDI, STAI, PSS, total CMHS score and the majority of CMHS subscale scores (p-values < 0.05). Stratified by sex, most of these associations remained significant only in women (p-values < 0.05). Stratified by race, higher 25(OH)D concentrations in the whites were significantly related to lower BDI, STAI, PSS, and CMHS-cynicism subscale (p-values < 0.05); 25(OH)D concentrations in the blacks were only inversely associated with CMHS and most CMHS subscales (p-values < 0.05), but not with BDI, STAI and PSS. We present novel findings of consistent inverse relationships between serum 25(OH)D concentration and various measures of mental health and life stress. Long-term interventional studies are warranted to investigate the roles of vitamin D supplementation in prevention and mitigation of depression, anxiety and psychological stress in young adults.
Thu, 21 May 2020
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202005.0346.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: mental health; COVID-19; school-going children; lockdown
Online: 21 May 2020 (15:59:25 CEST)
During this epidemic of COVID-19, children are in need of much concentration and profound love of the senior family members. Although the measures taken by the organizations are necessary to prevent the spread of the novel coronavirus, they may be causing widespread mental health issues, including depression and loneliness. Therefore, it is imperative that parents have to spend the lion-share of time with children while listening to them cordially. Parents can participate in sports with them to help them stay fit so that they can enjoy commemorating moments. However, in this additional time, the parents can also make them habituated to practice the rules of health, so does social distancing.
Fri, 15 May 2020
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202005.0258.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: major depression; oxidative and nitrosative stress; antioxidants; inflammation; neuro-immune; biomarkers
Online: 15 May 2020 (16:52:52 CEST)
Background: Hypertension, atherogenicity and insulin resistance are major risk factors of cardiovascular disorder (CVD), which shows a strong comorbidity with major depression (MDD) and bipolar disorder (BD). Activated oxidative and nitrosative stress (O&NS), inflammatory pathways, and increased atherogenicity are shared pathways underpinning CVD and mood disorders. Methods: The current study examined the effects of lipid hydroperoxides (LOOH), superoxide dismutase (SOD), nitric oxide metabolites (NOx), advanced oxidation protein products (AOPP), and malondialdehyde (MDA) on systolic (SBP) and diastolic (DBP) blood pressure in 96 mood disordered patients and 60 healthy controls. Results: A large part of the variance in SBP (31.6%) was explained by the regression on a z unit-weighted composite score (based on LOOH, AOPP, SOD, NOx) reflecting nitro-oxidative stress toxicity (NOSTOX), coupled with highly sensitive C-reactive protein, body weight and use of antihypertensives. Increased DBP was best predicted (23.8%) by body mass index and NOSTOX. The most important O&NS biomarkers predicting an increased SBP were in descending order of significance: LOOH, AOPP and SOD. Higher levels of the atherogenic index of plasma, HOMA2 insulin resistance index and basal thyroid-stimulating hormone also contributed to increased SBP independently from NOSTOX. Although there were no significant changes in SBP/DBP in mood disorders, the associations between NOSTOX and blood pressure were significant in patients with mood disorders but not in healthy controls. Conclusions: Activated O&NS pathways including increased lipid peroxidation and protein oxidation, which indicates hypochlorous stress, are the most important predictors of an increased BP, especially in patients with mood disorders.
Wed, 15 April 2020
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202004.0231.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: schizophrenia; neuroimmunomodulation; inflammation; biomarkers; major depression; treatment resistance
Online: 15 April 2020 (08:19:08 CEST)
Objective: About a third of schizophrenia patients are treatment-resistant to antipsychotic therapy. No studies established the fingerprints or pathway-phenotypes of treatment-resistant schizophrenia. The present study aimed to delineate the pathway-phenotypes of non-responders (NRTT) and partial responders (PRTT) to treatment using machine learning. Methods: We recruited 115 schizophrenia patients and 43 healthy controls and measured schizophrenia symptom dimensions, neurocognitive tests, plasma CCL11, interleukin-(IL)-6, IL-10, Dickkopf protein 1 (DKK1), high mobility group box-1 protein (HMGB1), κ- and µ-opioid receptors (KOR and MOR, respectively), endomorphin-2 (EM-2), and β-endorphin. Results: Machine learning showed that the NRTT group is a qualitatively distinct class and is significantly discriminated from PRTT with an accuracy of 100% using a neuro-immune-opioid-cognitive (NIOC) pathway-phenotype with as main determinants list learning, controlled word association, and Tower of London test scores, CCL11, IL-6, and EM2. The top-5 symptom domains separating NRTT from PRTT were in descending order: psychomotor retardation, negative symptoms, psychosis, depression, and mannerism. Moreover, a NIOC pathway also discriminated PRTT from healthy controls with an accuracy of 100% while all PRTT and controls were authenticated as belonging to their respective classes. Conclusion: A non-response to treatment with antipsychotics is determined by increased severity of specific symptom profiles coupled with deficits in executive functions, and episodic and semantic memory, and aberrations in neuro-immune and opioid pathways. No patients showed complete remission after treatment indicating that non-remitting in PRTT is attributable to increased HMGB1 and residual deficits in attention, executive functions, and semantic memory.
Sun, 29 March 2020
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202003.0432.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: chronic fatigue syndrome; myalgic encephalomyelitis; schizophrenia; neuroimmunomodulation; inflammation; biomarkers
Online: 29 March 2020 (10:52:40 CEST)
Background: Physiosomatic symptoms are an important part of schizophrenia phenomenology. The aim of this study is to examine the biomarker, neurocognitive and symptomatic correlates of physiosomatic symptoms in schizophrenia. Methods: We recruited 115 schizophrenia patients and 43 healthy controls and measured the Fibromyalgia and Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Rating (FF) scale, schizophrenia symptom dimensions, and the Brief Assessment of Cognition in Schizophrenia. We measured neuro-immune markers including plasma CCL11 (eotaxin), interleukin-(IL)-6, IL-10, Dickkopf protein 1 (DKK1), high mobility group box 1 protein (HMGB1) and endogenous opioid system (EOS) markers including κ-opioid receptor (KOR), µ-opioid receptor (MOR), endomorphin-2 (EM2) and β-endorphin. Results: Patients with an increased FF score display increased ratings of psychosis, hostility, excitement, formal though disorders, psychomotor retardation and negative symptoms as compared with patients with lower FF scores. A large part of the variance in the FF score (55.1%) is explained by the regression on digit sequencing task, token motor task, list learning, IL-10, age (all inversely) and IL-6 (positively). Neural network analysis shows that the top-6 predictors of the FF score are (in descending order): IL-6, HMGB1, education, MOR, KOR and IL-10. We found that 45.1% of the variance in a latent vector extracted from cognitive test scores, schizophrenia symptoms and the FF score was explained by HMGB-1, MOR, EM2, DKK1, and CCL11. Conclusions: FF symptoms are an integral part of the phenome of schizophrenia. Neurotoxic immune and neurodegenerative pathways and to a lesser extent the EOS appear to drive FF symptoms in schizophrenia.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202003.0416.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: menstrual cycle-related syndrome; neuroimmunomodulation; biomarkers; inflammation; oxidative stress; antioxidants
Online: 29 March 2020 (03:22:06 CEST)
Objective: To examine the associations between menstruation features and symptoms and hormone-immune-metabolic biomarkers. Methods: Forty-one women completed questionnaires assessing characteristic menstruation symptoms, duration of menstrual cycle and number of pads used/day and completed the Daily Record of Severity of Problems (DRSP) during the consecutive days of their menstrual cycle. Menses-related symptoms (MsRS) were computed from the sum of 10 pre- and post-menses symptoms and the menstruation blood and duration index (MBDI) was computed based on the daily number of pads and duration of menses. We assayed serum levels of various biomarkers at days 7, 14, 21, and 28 of the subjects’ menstrual cycle. Results: MBDI was significantly associated with a) MsRS including low abdominal cramps, and gastro-intestinal (GI) and pain symptoms (positively); b) plasma levels of haptoglobin (Hp), CCL5, insulin growth factor (IGF)-1, and plasminogen activator inhibitor (PAI)1 (all positively); and c) estradiol and paraoxonase (PON)1 arylesterase activity (both inversely). MsRS were significantly predicted by CCL5 and IGF-1 (both positively) and progesterone (inversely). Low-abdominal cramps, and gastro-intestinal and pain symptoms were associated with lower progesterone levels. The MBDI+MsRS score was significantly predicted by the cumulative effects of (in descending order of importance): Hp, IGF-1, PON1 arylesterase, estradiol and PAI. Conclusion: Menstruation-related features including estimated blood loss, duration of menses, cramps, pain and GI symptoms are associated with hormone-immune-metabolic biomarkers, which mechanistically may explain those features. Women with an increased MBDI+MsRS index ≥ 0.666 percentile may be considered to have menstruation-related distress, including dysmenorrhea symptoms.
Thu, 19 March 2020
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202003.0292.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: temporal lobe epilepsy; antioxidants; oxidative stress; neuroimmune; major depression; schizophrenia
Online: 19 March 2020 (02:11:32 CET)
Background: Temporal lobe epilepsy (TLE) is the most common focal epilepsy subtype in adults and is frequently accompanied by depression, anxiety and psychosis. Aberrations in total paraoxonase (PON)1 status may occur in TLE and those psychiatric conditions. Methods: We examined paraoxonase (PON)1 status, namely Q192R PON1 genotypes and PON1 enzymatic activities, in 40 normal controls and 104 TLE patients, 27 without comorbidities, and 77 with comorbidities including mood disorders (n=25), anxiety disorders (n=27) and psychosis (n=25). Outcomes: CMPAase and arylesterase activities were significantly lower in TLE and mesial temporal sclerosis (MTS) with and without psychiatric comorbidities than in normal controls. The areas under the ROC curve of CMPAase were 0.893 (0.037) for TLE and 0.895 (±0.037) for MTS. Partial Least Squares (PLS) path analysis showed that there were specific indirect effects of PON1 genotype on TLE severity (p<0.0001) and psychopathology (p<0.0001), which were both mediated by lowered CMPAase activity, while arylesterase activity was not significant. The severity of TLE was significantly associated with psychopathology scores. Furthermore, PON1 CMPAase activity was inversely associated with Mini Mental State Examination scores. Interpretation: The severity of TLE and comorbidities are to a large extent explained by lowered PON1 enzyme activities and by effects of the Q192R genotype which are mediated by lowered CMPAase activity. Total PON1 status plays a key role in the pathophysiology of TLE, MTS and psychiatric comorbidities by increasing the risk of oxidative toxicity. PON1 enzyme activities are new drug targets in TLE to treat seizure frequency and psychiatric comorbidities.
Wed, 11 March 2020
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202003.0186.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: bipolar depression; inflammation; neuroimmunomodulation; cytokines; psychoneuroimmunology; staging
Online: 11 March 2020 (10:45:16 CET)
There is now evidence that, based on cytokine profiles, bipolar disorder (BD) is accompanied by simultaneous activation of the immune-inflammatory response system (IRS) and the compensatory immune-regulatory system (CIRS), and that both components may be associated with the staging of illness. Nevertheless, no BD studies have evaluated the IRS/CIRS ratio using CD (cluster of differentiation) molecules expressed by peripheral blood activated T effector (Teff) and T regulatory (Treg) subpopulations. This study examined T cell subsets both before and after ex vivo anti CD3/CD28 stimulation using flow cytometric immunophenotyping in 25 euthymic BD patients and 21 healthy controls as well as human cytomegalovirus (HCMV)-specific IgG antibodies. BD is associated with a significantly lowered frequency of baseline (unstimulated) CD3+CD8+CD71+ and CD4+CD25+FOXP3 and increased CD4+CD25+FOXP3+CD152+ frequencies and with lowered stimulated frequencies of CD3+CD8+CD71+, CD4+CD25+FOXP3+CD152+ and CD4+CD25+FOXP3+GARP cells and, consequently, by an increased stimulated Teff/Treg ratio. Moreover, the number of manic, but not hypomanic or depressive episodes, is significantly and negatively associated with the stimulated proportions of CD3+CD4+CD154+, and CD69+ and CD71+ expression on CD4+ and CD8+ cells, while duration of illness (≥ 10 years) is accompanied by a depleted frequency of stimulated CD152+ Treg, and CD154+ and CD71+ CD4+ T cells. BD and anti-human cytomegalovirus (HCMV) IgG levels significantly interact to decrease the expression of CD4+CD25+FOXP+GARP T phenotypes. In conclusion, BD is characterized by deficits in immune-regulatory functions while the staging of illness is characterized by additional impairments is Teff and Treg activation. HCMV seropositivity may contribute to an immune-risk phenotype associated with BD.
Fri, 14 February 2020
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202002.0175.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: inflammation; neuroimmunomodulation; major depression; chronic fatigue syndrome; myalgic encephalomyelitis; biomarkers
Online: 14 February 2020 (01:53:53 CET)
Objective: A previous study showed that schizophrenia is accompanied by lowered levels of trace/metal elements including cesium. There are no data whether changes in cesium, rubidium and rhenium are associated with activated immune-inflammatory pathways, cognitive impairments, and the symptomatology of schizophrenia. Methods: This study measured cesium, rubidium, and rhenium, cognitive impairments (using the Brief Assessment of Cognition in Schizophrenia) and the cytokines/chemokines interleukin (IL)-1β, tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-α, and CCL11 (eotaxin) in 120 schizophrenia patients and 54 healthy controls. Severity of illness was assessed using the Brief Psychiatric Rating Scale (BPRS), the Scale for the Assessment of Negative Symptoms (SANS), the Fibromyalgia and Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Rating (FF) Scale and the Hamilton Depression Rating Scale (HAM-D). Results: Serum cesium was significantly lower in schizophrenia patients as compared with controls. Serum cesium was significantly and inversely associated with CCL11 and TNF-α, but not IL-1β. Moreover, there were significant inverse associations between serum cesium levels and the BPRS, FF, HAM-D and SANS scores and positive correlations between cesium and neurocognitive probe results including the Tower of London, Symbol Coding, Controlled Word Association, Category Instances, Digit Sequencing Task, and List Learning tests. Conclusion: The results suggest that lowered serum cesium levels may play a role in the pathophysiology of SCZ, specific symptom domains including negative, depressive and fatigue symptoms, neurocognitive impairments (spatial working, episodic and semantic memory and executive functions) and neuro-immune pathways as well.
Thu, 6 February 2020
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202002.0084.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: depression; leaky gut; microbiota; cytokines; neuroimmunomodulation; oxidative stress
Online: 6 February 2020 (10:30:36 CET)
There is robust evidence that major depression (MDD) is accompanied by a low-grade activation of the immune-inflammatory response system, which is involved in the pathophysiology of this disorder. It is also becoming apparent that glia cells are in reciprocal communication with neurons and orchestrate various neuromodulatory, homeostatic, metabolic, and immune mechanisms and have a crucial role in neuroinflammatory mechanisms in MDD. Those cells mediate the central nervous system (CNS) response to systemic inflammation and psychological stress, but at the same time, they may be an origin of the inflammatory response in the CNS. The sources of activation of the inflammatory response in MDD are immense, however, in recent years, it is becoming increasingly evident that the gastrointestinal tract with gut-associated lymphoid tissue (GALT) and increased intestinal permeability to bacterial LPS and food-derived antigens contribute to activation of low-grade inflammatory response with subsequent psychiatric manifestations. Furthermore, an excessive permeability to gut-derived antigenic material may lead to subsequent autoimmunities which are also known to be comorbid with MDD. In this chapter, we discuss fascinating interactions between the gastrointestinal tract, increased intestinal permeability, intestinal microbiota, and glia-neuron crosstalk, and their roles in the pathogenesis of the inflammatory hypothesis of MDD. To emphasize those crucial intercommunications for the brain functions, we propose the term of microbiota-gut-immune-glia (MGIG) axis.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202002.0082.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: gut microbiota; ADHD; 16S rRNA gene; Inattention
Online: 6 February 2020 (10:25:29 CET)
Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a common neurodevelopmental disorder. Given the growing evidence of gut microbiota being involved in psychiatric (including neurodevelopmental) disorders, we aimed to identify differences in gut microbiota composition between participants with ADHD and controls and to investigate the role of the microbiota in inattention and hyperactivity/impulsivity. Fecal samples were collected from 107 participants (NADHD=42; Ncontrols=50; NsubthreholdADHD=15; range age: 13-29 years). The relative quantification of bacterial taxa was done using 16S ribosomal RNA gene amplicon sequencing. Beta-diversity revealed significant differences in bacterial composition between participants with ADHD and healthy controls, which was also significant for inattention, but showing a trend in case of hyperactivity/impulsivity only. Ten genera showed nominal differences (P < 0.05) between both groups, of which seven genera were tested for their association with ADHD symptom scores (adjusting for age, sex, body mass index, time delay between feces collection and symptoms assessment, medication use and family relatedness). Our results show that variation of a genus from the Ruminococcaceae family (Ruminococcaceae_UCG_004) is associated (after multiple testing correction) with inattention symptoms, and suggest a role of gut microbiota in ADHD pathophysiology.
Tue, 4 February 2020
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202002.0048.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: NO; NOS; genetics; nitric oxide; nitric oxide synthase; oxidative stress; pathogenesis; mental disorders, neurological diseases
Online: 4 February 2020 (11:06:10 CET)
According to the recent data, nitric oxide (NO) is a chemical messenger that mediates functions such as vasodilation and neurotransmission, it also possesses antimicrobial and antitumoral activities. Nitric oxide has been implicated in neurotoxicity associated with stroke and neurodegenerative diseases, neural regulation of smooth muscle, including peristalsis, and penile erection. We searched for full-text English publications in Pubmed and SNPedia databases using keywords and combined word searches (nitric oxide, single nucleotide variants, single nucleotide polymorphisms, genes) over the past 15 years. In addition, earlier publications of historical interest were included in the review. In our review, we have sum up all NOS1, NOS2, NOS3, and NOS1AP single nucleotide variants (SNVs) involved in the development of mental disorders and neurological diseases/conditions. The results of studies we have discussed in this review are contradictory, that might be due to different designs of the studies, small sample sizes in some of them, as well as different social and geographical characteristics. However, the contribution of genetic and environmental factors has been understudied, that makes this issue increasing for researchers as the understanding of these mechanisms can support a search for new approaches to pathogenetic and disease-modifying treatment.
Fri, 24 January 2020
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202001.0285.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: oxidative stress; neuroimmunomodulation; major depression; inflammation; neurotoxicity; schizophrenia
Online: 24 January 2020 (14:46:17 CET)
Oxidative stress toxicity (OSTOX), as well as lowered antioxidant defenses (ANTIOX), play a role in temporal lobe epilepsy (TLE). Nevertheless, the associations between OSTOX/ANTIOX and psychiatric comorbidities in TLE are largely unknown.Thus, this study examines plasma malondialdehyde (MDA), lipid hydroperoxides (LOOH), advanced oxidation protein products (AOPP), nitric oxide metabolites (NOx), total radical trapping antioxidant parameter (TRAP) and sulfhydryl (-SH) groups in Depression due to TLE (n=25); Anxiety Disorders due to TLE (n=27); Psychotic Disorder due to TLE (n=25); “pure TLE” (n=27); and healthy controls (n=40).TLE and mesial temporal sclerosis (MTS) were characterized by significant increases in OSTOX (MDA, AOPP, LOOH) and lowered ANTIOX (-SH groups, TRAP). The discrimination of pure TLE from controls yielded a significant area under the ROC curve for MDA (0.999), AOPP (0.851), -SH groups (0.899) and the OSTOX/ANTIOX ratio (0.996). Seizure frequency is significantly associated with increased MDA and lowered LOOH and NOx levels. Increased MDA was associated with the severity of depressive and physiosomatic symptoms, whilst increased AOPP levels predicted suicidal ideation. Depression and anxiety disorders co-occurring with TLE showed significantly lower MDA levels than TLE without any comorbidities. The psychotic and negative symptoms of TLE are associated with increased MDA levels and excitation with increased LOOH and lowered TRAP levels.These results indicate that oxidative stress toxicity especially protein oxidation and aldehyde formation coupled with lowered -SH groups play a key role in the pathophysiology of TLE/MTS. Increased aldehyde formation also impacts psychopathology, psychosis, as well as negative and depressive symptoms.
Thu, 23 January 2020
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202001.0272.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: Exergame; depression; hemodialysis; end-stage renal disease; wearable technology; digital health
Online: 23 January 2020 (16:29:53 CET)
Regular exercise can reduce depression. However, the uptake of exercise is limited in patients with end-stage renal disease undergoing hemodialysis. To address the gap, we designed a gamified non-weight-bearing exercise program (Exergame), which can be executed during hemodialysis treatment. The Exergame is virtually supervised based on its interactive feedback via wearable sensors attached on lower extremities. We examined the effectiveness of this program to reduce depression symptom compared to supervised exercise in 73 hemodialysis patients (age=64.5±8.7years, BMI=31.6±7.6kg/m2). Participants were randomized into an Exergame group (EG) or a Supervised-exercise group (SG). Both groups received similar exercise tasks for 4-week, 3-session per week, 30-min per session, during hemodialysis treatment. Depression symptom was assessed at baseline and 4-week using Center for Epidemiologic Studies Depression (CES-D). Both groups showed significant reduction in depression score (37%, p<0.001, Cohen’s effect size d=0.69 in EG vs. 41%, p<0.001, d=0.65 in SG) with no between-group difference for the observed effect (p>0.050). The EG expressed a positive exercise experience including fun, safety, and helpfulness of sensor-feedback. Together, results suggested that the virtually-supervised low-intensity Exergame is feasible during routine hemodialysis treatment. It is as effective as supervised-exercise to reduce depression symptom, while reducing burden of administrating exercise in dialysis clinics.
Mon, 13 January 2020
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202001.0138.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: inflammation; Schizophrenia; treatment resistance; neurocognition; neuroimmunomodulation
Online: 13 January 2020 (04:15:01 CET)
Background: Activation of the immune-inflammatory response system (IRS) and the compensatory immune-regulatory system (CIRS) play a key role in SCZ and treatment resistant SCZ. There are only few data on immune and endogenous opioid system (EOS) interactions in SCZ and treatment resistant SCZ.Aim of the study: We examined serum β-endorphin, endomorphin-2 (EM2), mu-opioid (MOR) and kappa-opioid (KOR) receptors, and interleukin (IL)-6 and IL-10 in 60 non responders to treatment (NRTT), 55 partial RTT (PRTT) and 43 normal controls.Results: Serum EM2, KOR, MOR, IL-6 and IL-10 were significantly increased in SCZ as compared with controls. β-endorphin, EM2, MOR and IL-6 were significantly higher in NRTT than in PRTT. There were significant correlations between IL-6, on the one hand, and β-endorphin, EM2, KOR, and MOR, on the other, while IL-10 was significantly correlated with MOR only. A large part of the variance in negative symptoms, psychosis, hostility, excitation, mannerism, psychomotor retardation and formal thought disorders was explained by the combined effects of EM2 and MOR with or without IL-6 while increased KOR was significantly associated with all symptom dimensions. Increased MOR, KOR, EM2 and IL-6 were also associated with neurocognitive impairments including in episodic, semantic and working memory and executive functions.Conclusion: The EOS contributes to SCZ symptomatology, neurocognitive impairments and a non-response to treatment. In SCZ, EOS peptides/receptors may exert CIRS functions, whereas increased KOR levels may contribute to the pathophysiology of SCZ and EM2 and KOR to a non-response to treatment.
Thu, 9 January 2020
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202001.0077.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: premenstrual syndrome; depression; anxiety; antioxidants; neuro-immune; inflammation; oxidative stress
Online: 9 January 2020 (08:17:43 CET)
Objective: To examine whether 1) immune and nitro-oxidative stress (IO&NS) biomarkers are associated with premenstrual syndrome (PMS); and 2) changes in IO&NS biomarkers during the menstrual cycle (MC) are associated with PMS symptoms and plasma estradiol and progesterone. Methods: Forty-one women completed the Daily Record of Severity of Problems (DRSP) rating scale during 28 consecutive days and MC Associated Syndrome (MCAS) was diagnosed when the summed DRSP score during the MC is > 0.666 percentile. We assayed plasma levels of complement C3 and C4, highly sensitive C-reactive protein (hsCRP), haptoglobin (Hp), advanced oxidation protein products (AOPP), lipid hydroperoxides (LOOH), nitric oxide metabolites (NOx), total radical-trapping antioxidant parameter (TRAP), sulfhydryl (-SH) groups and the activity of paraoxonase (PON)1 at days 7 (D7), 14 (D14), 21 (D21) and 28 (D28) of the MC. Results: All biomarkers, except hsCRP, showed significant alterations during the MC. Arylesterase (AREase) was lowered at D28, while LOOH increased at D14 and C4 at D21 in women with MCAS. The total DRSP score was predicted by the combined effects of C4 (positively) and AREase and malondialdehyde (MDA) (both inversely associated). Progesterone lowered levels of LOOH, AOPP and C3 and estradiol lowered levels of Hp while both sex hormones increased 4-(chloromethyl)phenyl acetate (CMPA)ase and AREase activities and levels of -SH groups. Conclusion: PMS/MCAS is not accompanied by a peripheral inflammatory response. Lowered MDA and antioxidant defenses and increased C4 may play a role in MC-associated symptoms while sex hormones may have a protective effect against oxidative stress toxicity.
Fri, 27 December 2019
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201912.0363.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: health literacy; dementia; cross-sectional study; community; Alzheimer's Disease; knowledge
Online: 27 December 2019 (10:34:31 CET)
Background: This study aimed to assess the dementia literacy (DL) level of community-dwelling adults in the four cities (Hong Kong, Guangzhou, Macau and Zhuhai) of the Greater Bay Area of China and to determine the preferred mass media for receiving dementia information. Methods: A multi-city cross-sectional study with 788 community-dwelling adults completed the survey. Dementia literacy was indirectly measured by two validated scales, 30-item Alzhiemer’s Disease Knowledge Scale (ADKS) and 20-item Dementia Attitudes Scale (DAS). When the ADKS total score was <15 and DAS total score was <70, it was considered as ‘inadequate dementia literacy’. Participants were also asked to indicate whether they would like to receive dementia information via digital media or traditional media. Chi-square tests and logistic regressions were undertaken. Results: About one-third of the participants had inadequate dementia literacy. Those with young age or secondary education preferred to get dementia information from social media. But people living in public housing would like to get information from government or hospital websites. Middle-aged participants inclined to learn dementia from television or radio. Conclusion: It is worthy to conduct territory-wide public education in dementia and develop strategies according to their preferences in the types of mass media.
Tue, 24 December 2019
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: neuropsin; KLK8; mental disorders; mental health
Online: 24 December 2019 (08:53:38 CET)
Neuropsin is a brain-expressed extracellular matrix serine protease that governs synaptic plasticity through activity-induced proteolytic cleavage of synaptic proteins. Its substrates comprise several molecules central to structural synaptic plasticity, and studies in rodents have documented its role in cognition and the behavioral and neurobiological response to stress. Intriguingly, differential usage of KLK8 (neuropsin gene) splice forms in the fetal and adult brain has only been reported in humans, suggesting that neuropsin may serve a specialized role in human neurodevelopment. Through systematic interrogation of large-scale genetic data, we review KLK8 regulation in the context of mental health and provide a summary of clinical and preclinical evidence supporting a role for neuropsin in the pathogenesis of mental illness.
Sun, 8 December 2019
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201912.0100.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: schizophrenia; treatment resistance; neuro-immune; inflammation; cytokines; neurocognition
Online: 8 December 2019 (16:04:52 CET)
Background: Schizophrenia and treatment-resistant schizophrenia (TRS) are associated with aberrations in immune-inflammatory pathways. Increased High Mobility Group Protein 1 (HMGB1), an inflammatory mediator, and Dickkopf-Related Protein (DKK1), a Wnt/β-catenin signaling antagonist, affect the blood-brain-barrier and induce neurotoxic effects and neurocognitive deficits.Aim of the study: The present study aims to examine HMGB1 and DDK1 in non-responders to treatments with antipsychotics (NRTT, n=60), partial RTT (PRTT, n=55) and healthy controls (n=43) in relation to established markers of schizophrenia including IL-6, IL-10 and CLL11 (eotaxin); and to delineate whether these proteins are associated with the schizophrenia symptom subdomains and neurocognitive impairments.Results: HMGB1, DKK1, IL-6 and CCL11 were significantly higher in schizophrenia patients than in controls. DKK1 and IL-6 were significantly higher in NRTT than in PRTT and controls while IL-10 was higher in NRTT than in controls. Binary logistic regression analysis showed that schizophrenia was best predicted by increased DDK1 and HMGB1 while NRTT (versus PRTT) was best predicted by increased IL-6 and CCL11 levels. A large part of the variance in psychosis, hostility, excitation, mannerism and negative (PHEMN) symptoms, and formal thought disorders was explained by HMGB1, IL-6, and CCL11 while most neurocognitive functions were predicted by HMGB1, DDK1 and CCL11. Conclusion: The neurotoxic effects of HMGB1, DKK1, IL-6 and CCL11 including effects on the blood-brain-barrier and the Wnt/β-catenin signaling pathway may cause impairments in executive functions, and working, episodic and semantic memory and explain, in part, PHEMN symptoms and a non-response to treatment with antipsychotic drugs.
Mon, 2 December 2019
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints201912.0012.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: premenstrual; depression; inflammation; neuro-immune; oxidative stress; antioxidants
Online: 2 December 2019 (14:12:33 CET)
Premenstrual syndrome (PMS) frequently occurs in women of childbearing age. There are different case definitions of PMS, one proposed by the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) and another based on the Daily Record of Severity of Problems (DRSP) scores. Here we review our recent papers indicating that the discovery of biomarkers of menstrual cycle-related symptoms is strongly dependent on the case definitions used and that the gold standard methods used to asses PMS, including the ACOG case definition, induce a high degree of false-negative findings. We propose a new case definition of the menstrual cycle-associated syndrome (MCAS), which is characterized by increased DRSP scores during the menstrual cycle and additionally by an exaggerated increase in symptoms the week prior to the menses. This case definition performed well and was externally validated by diverse biomarkers including plasma levels of progesterone and estradiol, chemokines (e.g. CCL2, CCL5 and CCL11), epidermal growth factor, hydroperoxides, paraoxonase 1 activity and complement C4. In conclusion, when evaluating menstrual cycle-related symptoms and their associations with biomarkers, we propose to assess daily measurements of the DRSP and based on those scores to a) use the diagnosis of MCAS as an indicant of menstrual cycle-related symptoms; and b) examine the associations of the time series in the DRSP and its subdomains (e.g. depression, physio-somatic, anxiety) and those in biomarkers including distributed lag models.
Tue, 12 November 2019
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201911.0135.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: cytokines, neuro-immune, inflammation, antioxidants, oxidative stress, paraoxonase 1
Online: 12 November 2019 (17:02:22 CET)
Accumulating evidence suggests that TNF-α-mediated immune-neurotoxicity contributes to cognitive impairments and the overall severity of schizophrenia (OSOS). There are no data whether peripheral IL-6 and IL-4 may affect the phenome of schizophrenia above and beyond the effects of TNF-α and whether those cytokines are regulated by lowered natural IgM to malondialdehyde (MDA) and paraoxonase 1 enzyme activity. We assessed the aforementioned biomarkers in schizophrenia patients with (n=40) and without (n=40) deficit schizophrenia and 40 healthy controls. Deficit schizophrenia was best predicted by a combination of increased IL-6 and PON1 status (QQ genotype and lowered CMPAase activity) and lowered IgM to MDA. Partial Least Squares bootstrapping shows that 41.0% of the variance in negative symptoms, psychosis, hostility, excitation, mannerism, psychomotor retardation, and formal thought disorders was explained by increased TNF-α and PON1 status (QQ genotype and lowered CMPAase activity), lowered IL-4 and IgM to MDA as well as male sex and lowered education. We found that 47.9% of the variance in verbal fluency, word list memory, true recall, Mini-Mental State Examination, and executive functions was predicted by increased TNF-α and lowered IL-4, IgM to MDA and education. In addition, both TNF-α and IL-4 levels were significantly associated with lowered IgM to MDA, while TNF-α was correlated with PON1 status. These data provide evidence that the symptomatic (both the deficit subtype and OSOS) and cognitive impairments in schizophrenia are to a large extent mediated by the effects of immune-mediated neurotoxicity as well as lowered regulation by the innate immune system.
Sun, 3 November 2019
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201911.0018.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: suicide rate; suicide by pesticide; occupational group; suicide prevention; south korea; population-based study
Online: 3 November 2019 (15:46:54 CET)
Suicide is a major public health concern in South Korea, and self-poisoning by pesticides is one of the common methods of suicide. Pesticide ban policies have been successful for suicide prevention; however, no studies have shown their effect according to occupational groups. The present study analyzed suicide and suicide by pesticide rates among South Korean workers age 15-64 in 2003-2017, their associations with occupational groups, and the impact of three major economic indices on these factors. Workers in the agriculture, forestry, and fishery industries have relative risks of 5.62 (95% CI: 5.54-5.69) for suicide overall and 25.49 (95% CI: 24.46-26.57) for suicide by pesticide. The real gross domestic product (RGDP) has a positive association with suicide overall only in the last five-year period investigated in this study, and the unemployment rate consistently has a positive association. The economic status and policy for suicide prevention affect suicide and suicide by pesticide rates differently among occupational groups and different time periods. Policy addressing suicidal risk for different occupational groups should be of concern in South Korea.
Sun, 20 October 2019
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201910.0239.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: deficit schizophrenia; machine learning; cytokines; cognition; inflammation; neuro-immune
Online: 20 October 2019 (17:21:05 CEST)
In Schizophrenia, pathway-genotypes may be constructed by combining interrelated immune biomarkers with changes in specific neurocognitive functions that represent aberrations in brain neuronal circuits. These constructs provide insight on the phenome of schizophrenia and show how pathway-phenotypes mediate the effects of genome X environmentome interactions on the symptomatology/phenomenology of schizophrenia. Nevertheless, there is a lack of knowledge how to construct pathway-phenotypes using Partial Least Squares (PLS) path modeling and Soft Independent Modeling of Class Analogy (SIMCA). This paper aims to provide a step-by-step utilization guide for the construction of pathway-phenotypes that reflect aberrations in the neuroimmune - brain circuit axis (NIBCA) in deficit schizophrenia. This NIBCA index is constructed using immune biomarkers (CCL-2, CCL-11, IL-1β, sIL-1RA, TNF-α, sTNFR1, sTNFR2) and neurocognitive tests (Brief Assessment of Cognition in Schizophrenia) predicting overall severity of schizophrenia (OSOS) in 120 deficit SCZ and 54 healthy participants. Using SmartPLS path analysis, a latent vector is extracted from those biomarkers and cognitive tests, which shows a good construct reliability (Cronbach alpha and composite reliability) and replicability and which is reflectively measured through its NIBCA manifestations. This NIBCA pathway-phenotype explains 75.0% of the variance in PHEMN (psychotic, hostility, excitation, mannerism and negative) symptoms. Using SIMCA, we constructed a NIBCA pathway-class that defines deficit schizophrenia as a qualitatively distinct nosological entity and which allows patients with deficit schizophrenia to be authenticated as belonging to the deficit schizophrenia class. In conclusion, our nomothetic approach to develop a nomological network combining neuro-immune and neurocognitive phenome markers to predict OSOS and cross-validate a diagnostic class generated replicable models reflecting the key phenome of the illness, which may mediate the effects of genome X environmentome interactions on the final outcome phenome features, namely symptomatology and phenomenology.
Sun, 29 September 2019
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201909.0329.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: premenstrual syndrome; chemokines; inflammation; neuro-immune; depression
Online: 29 September 2019 (06:29:54 CEST)
Objective: To examine associations between chemokines and menstrual cycle associated symptoms (MCAS). Methods: Forty-one women completed the Daily Record of Severity of Problems (DRSP) rating scale during 28 consecutive days of the menstrual cycle. MCAS is diagnosed when the total daily DRSP score during the menstrual cycle is > 0.666 percentile. We assayed plasma CCL2, CCL5, CCL11, CXCL8, CXCL10, EGF, IGF-1, and PAI-1 at days 7, 14, 21 and 28 of the menstrual cycle. Results: CCL2, CCL5, CCL11 and EGF are significantly higher in women with MCAS than in those without. Increased CCL2, CXCL10, CXCL8, CCL11 and CCL5 levels are significantly associated with DRSP scores while CCL2 is the most significant predictor explaining 39.6% of the variance. The sum of the neurotoxic chemokines CCL2, CCL11 and CCL5 is significantly associated with the DRSP score and depression, physiosomatic, breast-craving and anxiety symptoms. The impact of chemokines on MCAS symptoms may differ between consecutive weeks of the menstrual cycle with CCL2 being the most important predictor of increased DRSP levels during the first two weeks, and CXCL10 or a combination of CCL2, CCL11 and CCL5 being the best predictors during week 3 and 4, respectively. Discussion: The novel case definition “MCAS” is externally validated by increased levels of uterus-associated chemokines and EGF. Those chemokines are involved in MCAS and are regulated by sex hormones and modulate endometrium functions and brain neuro-immune responses, which may underpin MCAS symptoms. As such, uterine-related chemokines may link the uterus with brain functions via a putative uterine-chemokine-brain axis.
Mon, 9 September 2019
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201909.0095.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: deficit schizophrenia; antioxidants; bacteria; neuro-immune; inflammation; oxidative and nitrosative stress
Online: 9 September 2019 (09:00:44 CEST)
Background: Primary deficit schizophrenia (DS) is characterized by enduring negative symptoms and represents a qualitatively different disease entity with respect to non-deficit schizophrenia (NDS). No studies investigated the association between the enzyme paraoxonase 1 (PON1) and DS and its phenomenology. Methods: In this case-control study, Thai women and men, aged 18-65 years, were divided in DS (n=40) and NDS (n=40) and were compared to controls (n=40). PON1 activities against 4-(chloromethyl)phenyl acetate (CMPA) and phenylacetate were determined. Moreover, subjects were genotyped for their PON1 Q192R polymorphism and IgA levels responses directed to Gram-negative bacteria were measured. Results: DS is significantly associated with the QQ genotype and the Q allele as compared with NDS and controls. PON1 activities are significantly and inversely associated with negative symptoms, formal thought disorders, psychomotor retardation, excitation and DS. The presence of the Q allele is associated with increased IgA responses to Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Morganella morganii, and Pseudomonas putida as compared with RR carriers. Conclusions: The PON1 Q allele and lower PON1 activities especially against CMPA are associated with DS, indicating lowered quorum quenching abilities as well as lowered defenses against lipoperoxidation and immune activation. It is suggested that lowered PON1 activity in DS constitutes an impairment in the innate immune system which together with lowered natural IgM may cause lower immune regulation thereby predisposing towards greater neurotoxic effects of immune-inflammatory, oxidative and nitrosative pathways and Gram-negative microbiota.
Tue, 3 September 2019
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201909.0033.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: depression; cytokines; neuro-immune; inflammation; oxidative stress; antioxidants
Online: 3 September 2019 (16:20:18 CEST)
Beta-thalassemia major (β-TM) patients are treated with repeated blood transfusions, which may cause iron overload (IO), which in turn may induce immune aberrations. Patients with β-TM have an increased risk of major depressive disorder (MDD). The aims of the present study are to examine whether repeated blood transfusions, IO and immune-inflammatory responses are associated with MDD in children (6-12 years) with β-TM. The Children’s Depression Inventory (CDI), iron status (serum iron, ferritin, transferrin, TS%) and serum levels of CCL11, IL-1β, IL-10, and TNF-α were measured in β-TM with (n=54) and without (n=57) MDD and in healthy children (n=55). The results show that MDD in β-TM is associated with a greater number of blood transfusions, increased IO and IL-1β levels. Partial Least Squares path analysis shows that 68.8% of the variance in the CDI score is explained by the number of blood transfusions, IO, and increased levels of IL-1β and TNF-α. The latter two cytokines partly mediate the effects of IO on the CDI score, while the effects of blood transfusions on the CDI score are partly mediated by IO and the path from IO to immune activation. IO is also associated with increased IL-10 and lower CCL11 levels but these alterations are not significantly associated with MDD. In conclusion, blood transfusions may be causally related to MDD in β-TM children and their effects are in part mediated by increased IO and the consequent immune-inflammatory response. The results suggest that not only IO and its consequences including inflammation and ferroptosis, but also other factors related to the number of transfusions may cause MDD including psychosocial stressors. Current treatment modalities with folic acid and vitamin C are insufficient to attenuate IO and immune-inflammatory responses and to prevent MDD is children with β-TM undergoing blood transfusions.
Sun, 11 August 2019
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201908.0132.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: schizophrenia; inflammation; oxidative stress; neuro-immune; gut bacteria; antioxidants
Online: 11 August 2019 (14:58:43 CEST)
In schizophrenia, a single latent trait underlies psychosis, hostility, excitation, mannerism, negative (PHEMN) symptoms, formal thought disorders (FTD) and psychomotor retardation (PMR). Schizophrenia is accompanied by a breakdown of gut and blood-brain-barrier (BBB) pathways, increased tryptophan catabolite (TRYCAT) levels, bacterial translocation, and lowered natural IgM and paraoxonase (PON)1 activity. The aim of this study was to examine the factor structure of schizophrenia symptom domains and the biomarker correlates of these factors. We recruited 80 patients with schizophrenia and 40 healthy subjects and assessed the IgA/IgM responses to paracellular/transcellular (PARA/TRANS) ratios, IgA responses to TRYCATs, natural IgM to malondialdehyde and Gram-negative bacteria, and PON1 enzymatic activity.Direct Hierarchical Exploratory Factor Analysis showed a bifactorial oblique model with a) a general factor which loaded highly on all symptom domains, named overall severity of schizophrenia (“OSOS”); and b) a single-group factor (SGF) loading on negative symptoms and PMR. We found that 40% of the variance in the OSOS score was explained by IgA/IgM to PARA/TRANS ratio, male sex and education while 36.9% of the variance in SGF score was explained by IgA to PARA/TRANS, IgM to Gram-negative bacteria, female sex (positively associated) and IgM to MDA, and PON1 activity (negatively associated). Schizophrenia phenomenology comprises two biologically-validated dimensions, namely a general OSOS dimension and a single-group negative symptom dimension, which are associated with a breakdown of gut/BBB barriers, increased bacterial translocation and lowered protection against oxidation, inflammation and bacterial infections through lowered PON1 and natural IgM.
Fri, 26 July 2019
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201907.0293.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: depression; bipolar disorder; gut; bacterial translocation; LPS; oxidative stress; neuro-immune; immunology; psychiatry
Online: 26 July 2019 (00:38:09 CEST)
Major depression (MDD) is accompanied by higher serum IgM/IgA responses to LPS of Gram-negative bacteria, suggesting increased bacterial translocation and gut dysbiosis. Gut dysbiosis may occur in bipolar disorder (BD) and there are differences between MDD and BD type 1 (BP1) and -2 (BP2) in nitro-oxidative stress biomarkers associated with leaky gut. This study examines serum IgM/IgA responses directed to LPS of 6 Gram-negative bacteria in 29 BP1, 37 BP2, 44 MDD and 30 healthy individuals. MDD plus BD was best discriminated from controls by increased IgM/IgA responses to Pseudomonas aeruginosa. BP1 patients showed higher IgM responses to Morganella morganii as compared with MDD and BP2 patients. Patients with melancholia showed higher IgA responses to Citrobacter koseri as compared to controls and non-melancholic depression. The total score on the Hamilton Depression Rating Scale was significantly associated with IgA responses, especially C. koseri. IgG responses to oxidized low-density lipoprotein were significantly associated with signs of increased bacterial translocation. In conclusion, not only MDD but also BP1 and BP2 are accompanied by an immune response due to the increased load of plasma LPS of gut commensal bacteria while these aberrations in the gut-brain axis are most pronounced in BP1 and patients with melancholic features. Activated oxidative stress pathways and autoimmune responses to oxidative specific epitopes in mood disorders may be driven by a breakdown in gut paracellular, transcellular and/or vascular pathways. If replicated, drugs that protect the integrity of the gut barrier may offer novel therapeutic opportunities for BP1 and MDD.
Tue, 23 July 2019
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201907.0262.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: Chronic fatigue syndrome, inflammation, neuro-immune, physio-somatic, schizophrenia, cytokines
Online: 23 July 2019 (11:49:41 CEST)
A subset of patients with schizophrenia experience physio-somatic symptoms reminiscent of chronic fatigue and fibromyalgia. In schizophrenia, these symptoms contribute to impaired quality of life, and are strongly related to neuro-cognitive deficits, and increased IgA responses to tryptophan catabolites. Negative and PHEM (psychosis, hostility, excitation, mannerism) symptoms, psychomotor retardation (PMR) and formal thought disorders, appear to be manifestations of a single trait reflecting overall severity of schizophrenia (OSOS). In this study, 120 patients with deficit schizophrenia (DEFSCZ) and 54 healthy subjects were assessed with the FibroFatigue (FF) rating scale, and the above-mentioned symptom domains as well as neuro-cognitive tests and biomarkers were measured. In DEFSCZ, there were robust associations between the FF score and all above-mentioned symptom domains, and impairments in semantic and episodic memory and executive functions. Furthermore, the FF score loaded highly on an OSOS latent vector (LV), which showed adequate convergent validity, internal consistency reliability and predictive relevance and fitted a reflective model. Soft Independent Modelling of Class Analogy (SIMCA) showed that the FF items discriminated DEFSCZ from controls with an overall accuracy of 100%. Interleukin IL-1β, IL-1 receptor antagonist (sIL-1RA), tumour necrosis factor (TNF)-α and CCL-11 (eotaxin) explained 66.8% of the variance in the FF score and 59.4% of the variance in OSOS. In conclusion, these data show that physio-somatic symptoms are a core component of the phenomenology of DEFSCZ and are largely mediated by neurotoxic effects of activated immune pathways, including aberrations in CCL-11, IL-1β and TNF-α signalling.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201907.0247.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: opioid; microbiome-brain axis; DHA; anxiety; polyunsaturated fatty acids; intravenous self-administration; mice
Online: 23 July 2019 (04:09:40 CEST)
Opioids are highly addictive substances with a relapse rate of over 90%. While preclinical models of chronic opioid exposure exist for studying opioid dependence, none recapitulate the relapses observed in human opioid addiction. The mechanisms associated with opioid dependence, the accompanying withdrawal symptoms and the relapses that are often observed months or years after opioid dependence are poorly understood. Therefore, we developed a novel model of chronic opioid exposure whereby the level of administration is self-directed with periods of behavior acquisition, maintenance and then extinction alternating with reinstatement. This profile arguably mirrors that seen in humans, with initial opioid use followed by alternating periods of abstinence and relapse. Recent evidence suggests that dietary interventions that reduce inflammation, including omega-3 fatty acids such as docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), may reduce substance misuse liability. Using the self-directed intake model, we characterize the observed profile of opioid use and demonstrate that a diet enriched in polyunsaturated fat acids (PUFAs) ameliorates oxycodone-seeking behaviors in the absence of drug availability and reduces anxiety. Guided by the major role gut microbiota have on brain function, neuropathology, and anxiety, we profile the microbiome composition and the effects of chronic opioid exposure and DHA supplementation. We demonstrate that withdrawal of opioids led to a significant depletion in specific microbiota genera whereas DHA supplementation increased microbial richness, phylogenetic diversity, and evenness. Lastly, we examined the activation state of microglia in the striatum and found that DHA supplementation reduced the basal activation state of microglia. These preclinical data suggest that a diet enriched in PUFAs could be used as a treatment to alleviate anxiety induced opioid-seeking behavior and relapse in human opioid addiction.
Mon, 22 July 2019
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: multiple sclerosis; MS; cause; genes; polygenic; heredity; autoimmune; diet; depression; fatigue; suicide; seizures; bowel disorders; thyroid; mitochondria; chromosome 2; chromosome 5; glial cells; sunlight; vitamin D3; ultraviolet radiation; melanocyte stimulating hormone; melanocyte concentrating hormone; stress
Online: 22 July 2019 (04:37:27 CEST)
The literature on the causation of multiple sclerosis (MS), both genetic and environmental, extends over hundreds of years, with no firm conclusions on the exact role of autoimmunity and lifestyle. The epidemiology of MS was the basis for this review, but with a new, extensive examination of genes pertaining to each disorder, and disease of first, and second, degree relatives of those with MS. The author’s motivation was to discover some relationship between MS, and notable familial conditions, as the heredity of MS is concluded to be 30%, and the disorders had a chronic and/or idiopathic nature. This investigation hoped to further understand the randomness of MS- who acquires it, and what symptoms develop- after the author’s decades of observing several incidences of multiple members developing MS in a single family. Online databases for the human genome were used to link genes to MS, and symptoms, including excessive depression, fatigue and suicide rates, in coordination with linking genes for specific familial conditions including seizures, stroke, mental illness, bowel disorders, and thyroid conditions. Interesting associations were found, notably a cluster of Th2 cytokines, known to cure the animal model of MS, important receptors for neurotransmitters and hormones, a gene specific to Epstein Barr Virus, and potential genes for mitochondrial dysfunction. The results surprised the author, showing polygenic regions of chromosome 2 and 5, especially a cluster at loci 5q31-q33, may be dysregulated. The conclusion agrees with past hypotheses MS results not from a single gene, but from various genes, including those expressed in glial cells. The individual theories to the causation of MS, starting with Charcot may be explained by multiple pathways converging into a single disease outcome. In coordination with a sunlight factor, chromosome 2 appears to mediate the immune system, and inflammation, through ultraviolet radiation producing vitamin D3 in the skin, but additionally through peptides formed in the melanocyte stimulating and concentrating hormone class. The impact of stress in MS could be primary, given the loci of several stress-related and stress-modulated genes on these chromosomes, and calls for more appreciation of, and greater care for, the MS patients’ state of mind.
Wed, 10 July 2019
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201907.0147.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: deficit schizophrenia, positive symptoms, negative symptoms, inflammation, neuro-immune
Online: 10 July 2019 (11:02:41 CEST)
Schizophrenia comprises various symptom domains, including positive and negative symptoms. Machine learning showed that a) negative symptoms are significantly interrelated with PHEM (psychosis, hostility, excitation, and mannerism) symptoms, formal thought disorders (FTD) and psychomotor retardation (PMR); and b) stable phase schizophrenia comprises two distinct classes, namely Major Neuro-Cognitive Psychosis (MNP, largely overlapping with deficit schizophrenia) and Simple NP (SNP). In this study, we recruited 120 MNP patients and 54 healthy subjects and measured the above-mentioned symptom domains. In MNP, there were significant associations between negative and PHEM symptoms, FTD and PMR. A single latent trait, which is essentially unidimensional, underlies these key domains of schizophrenia and MNP and additionally shows excellent internal consistency reliability, convergent validity, and predictive relevance. Confirmatory Tedrad Analysis indicates that this latent vector fits a reflective model. The lack of discriminant validity shows that PHEM and negative symptoms greatly overlap and probably measure the same construct. Soft Independent Modeling of Class Analogy (SIMCA) shows that MNP (diagnosis based on negative symptoms) is better modeled using PHEM symptoms, FTD, and PMR than negative symptoms. In conclusion, in stable phase MNP, a restricted sample of the schizophrenia population, negative and PHEM symptoms, FTD and PMR belong to one underlying latent vector reflecting overall severity of schizophrenia (OSOS). The bi-dimensional concept of “positive” and “negative” symptoms cannot be validated and, therefore, future research in stable phase schizophrenia should consider that the latent phenomenon OSOS as well as its 8 reflective manifestations are the key factors of schizophrenia phenomenology.
Tue, 2 July 2019
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201907.0037.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: clinical psychology; cultural psychology; ethic and professionalism; holistic medicine; qualitative methods
Online: 2 July 2019 (09:39:40 CEST)
This study aimed to explore how Indonesian clinical psychologists (CPs) address aspects of spirituality and religion (SR), particularly their attitudes towards and experience of it, on the mental health context. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with 43 CPs in public health centres in Yogyakarta Province, Indonesia. Data were anyalsed using deductive thematic analysis and they generated ten sub-themes which were merged into three central themes. The first theme was experiences related to SR, particularly in Indonesian sociocultural context. The second theme concentrated on participants’ clinical experience related to SR integration into clinical practice. The last theme highlighted the effort made by participants to create holistic mental health services. The originality of this study was represented by the interview quote in the title, “Doing my profession is also part of worship”. It was found that SR is part of culture and belief among Indonesian people, including CPs and mental health treatment clients. In summary, participants genuinely acknowledged that they were not able to completely detach SR from their professional practice. However, participants also pointed out that they were different with spiritual-religious healers (SRHs) and favourably welcomed future collaboration with credible SRHs. This positive attitude embodied a holistic care approach that recognises the diverse biopsycho-social-spiritual needs of clients. Therefore, professional organisations and psychology faculties should establish regulations and education of SR in psychology curricula and conventional psychotherapy to achieve this holistic mental health services in Indonesia.
Wed, 26 June 2019
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201906.0260.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: complementary and alternative medicine; integrative medicine; knowledge; training and education; psychology; mental health; qualitative
Online: 26 June 2019 (05:31:14 CEST)
Background and objectives: The inadequate knowledge of complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) among health professionals may put their clients in risky situation because they then would find information about CAM from unreliable sources. Clinical psychologists (CPs), as health professionals, have also the opportunity to provide psychoeducation on the latest CAM scientific research to their clients. The current study aimed to explore knowledge and educational needs of CAM among CPs in Indonesia because previous studies on exploring CAM knowledge and educational needs of CAM were primarily conducted in Western countries. Materials and Methods: Data were collected through semi-structured face-to-face interviews with 43 CPs in public health centers (PHCs) in Indonesia. Most interviews were held at the PHCs where participants worked and interviews lasted for 55 minutes, on average. The interview recordings were transcribed and were analyzed using deductive thematic analysis. Results: Five main themes emerged within participants’ responses regarding CAM knowledge and educational needs. First (CAM understanding), participants’ responses ranged from those with little or no prior knowledge of CAM treatments and uses, to those with much greater familiarity. Second (source of knowledge), participants’ access ranged widely in terms of references, from popular to scientific literature. Third (why is it important?), participants identified CAM essentially as part of Indonesian culture and it was therefore crucial to have this cultural knowledge. Fourth (the challenges and what is needed?), the challenges for improving participants’ knowledge came from personal and institutional levels. Fifth (what and how to learn?), participants advised that only CAM treatments that fit in brief psychotherapy sessions should be introduced in professional training. Conclusions: This qualitative study discovered that CAM was neither well-known nor understood widely. Participants advised that professional associations and health institutions should work together in enhancing knowledge of CAM and incorporating CAM education into psychology education.
Mon, 24 June 2019
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201906.0243.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: major depression; chronic fatigue; fibromyalgia; neuro-immune; inflammation
Online: 24 June 2019 (10:19:29 CEST)
Chronic fatigue and fibromyalgia symptoms frequently occur in major depressive disorder (MDD). The pathophysiology of these symptoms may in part, be ascribed to activated immune pathways, although it is unclear whether muscular factors play a role in their onset. The aim of the present study is to examine the role of muscle proteins in major depression in association with symptoms of chronic fatigue and fibromyalgia. We measured serum levels of agrin, talin-2, titin, and creatine phosphokinase (CPK) as well as the FibroFatigue (FF), the Hamilton Depression Rating Scale (HAM-D) and the Beck Depression Inventory (BDI-II) in 60 MDD patients and 30 healthy controls. The results show a significant increase in agrin and talin-2 in MDD patients as compared with controls. There were highly significant correlations between agrin and HAM-D, BDI-II and FF scores. Agrin, but not talin or titin, was significantly and positively associated with all 12 items of the FF scale. We found that a large part of the variance in HAM-D (47.4%), BDI-II (43.4%) and FF (43.5%) scores was explained by the regression on agrin, smoking, female sex (positively associated) and education (inversely associated). CPK was significantly and inversely associated with the total FF score and with muscle and gastro-intestinal symptoms, fatigue, a flu-like malaise, headache and memory, autonomic and sleep disturbances. These results suggest that aberrations in neuromuscular (NMJs) and myotendinous junctions may play a role in MDD and that the aberrations in NMJs coupled with lowered CPK may play a role in symptoms of chronic fatigue and fibromyalgia in MDD. Moreover, the increase of agrin in MDD probably functions as part of the compensatory immune-regulatory system (CIRS).
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: Yezidi/ Yazidi; ISIS / IS; Northern Iraq offensive; Iraq / Syrian civil war; women's mental health; PTSD
Online: 24 June 2019 (09:11:36 CEST)
The Yezidis who represent a religious minority living in Northern Iraq were particularly affected of the persecution by ISIS that gained power after 2013. This paper gives an overview of the events and the mental health consequences as well as associated influences on affected female Yezidis. Based on systematic literature search the aspects “Persecution by ISIS and actual situation of the Yezidi community”, “Gender-specific aspects of the persecution and its consequences”, “Mental health of the affected women” and “Cultural-historical and religious context” are worked out. Research indicates a high burden of health strain and mental health problems in the surviving Yezidi women, especially PTSD and depression. Concerning transgenerational trauma, the recent genocide revive past experiences in the history of the community. Like the narrow cultural and religious rules of the community, this can be both a resource and a burden. The actual extent of the attacks is neither predictable for the affected individuals nor for the community, consequences could also be passed on descendants. Long-term care and support of the affected persons, their descendants and the Yezidi community seems indispensable.
Fri, 31 May 2019
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201905.0377.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: dementia; AGAP; bicarbonate; cognitive function; Mild cognitive impairment; CERAD
Online: 31 May 2019 (08:31:49 CEST)
Amnestic mild cognitive impairment (aMCI) is a condition characterized by mild deficits in episodic and semantic memory and learning. The conversion rate of aMCI to Alzheimer disease (AD) is significantly higher in aMCI than in the general population. The aim of this study is to examine whether aMCI is a valid diagnostic category or whether aMCI comprises different subgroups based on cognitive functions. We recruited 60 aMCI patients, 60 with AD and 61 healthy controls who completed neuropsychological tests of the Consortium to Establish a Registry for Alzheimer’s Disease (CERAD-NP) and biomarkers including serum anion gap (AGAP). Principal component analysis, support vector machine and Soft Independent Modeling of Class Analogy (SIMCA) showed that AD patients and controls were highly significantly discrimanted from each other, while patients with aMCI overlap considerably with normal controls. SIMCA showed that 68.3% of the aMCI patients were assigned to the control class (named: aMCI-HC), 15% to AD (aMCI-AD), while 16.6% did not belong to either class (aMCI-strangers). aMCI-HC subjects showed sings of very mild cognitive decline and impaired recall. aMCI-strangers showed signs of mild cognitive impairment with impaired fluency and naming. aMCI-AD cases showed a cognitive profile reminiscent of AD an increased AGAP levels. In conclusion, our SIMCA model may classify subjects afforded a clinical diagnosis of aMCI according to Petersen’s criteria into three clinically relevant subgroups and help in the early detection of AD by identifying aMCI patients at risk to develop AD and those that have an AD prodrome.
Wed, 29 May 2019
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201905.0360.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: neuropsin; KLK8; mental disorders; mental health
Online: 29 May 2019 (16:50:08 CEST)
Neuropsin is an extracellular matrix serine protease that governs the proteolytic cleavage of synaptic proteins and consequently synaptic structural plasticity. In the brain, its substrates include the cell adhesion molecules Neuregulin-1 and L1CAM, that have been linked to neurodevelopmental processes and disorders, such as schizophrenia and bipolar disorder. Neuropsin mRNA is abundant in the cerebellum and several peripheral tissues from mid-gestation but is mainly expressed in cortical and limbic tissues postnatally. Differential usage of neuropsin splice forms in the fetal and adult brain has only been reported in humans, suggesting that neuropsin may serve a specialized role in human neurodevelopment. Accordingly, both the expression and proteolytic activity of neuropsin are subject to regulation by neural activity as well as by environmental risk factors associated with mental illness, such as psychophysiological stress. Intriguingly, dysregulation of neuropsin has been reported in depression and Alzheimer’s disease and its implication in mental disorder is supported by genetic and epigenome wide studies. Here we review neuropsin regulation in mental health and provide a summary of clinical and preclinical evidence supporting a role for neuropsin in the pathogenesis of mental disorders.
Mon, 27 May 2019
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201905.0317.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: childhood trauma; stressful life events; sleep patterns; anxiety; depression; adolescence
Online: 27 May 2019 (12:36:54 CEST)
Adolescence is a critical developmental period associated with an increase in stress, the appearance of anxiety and depressive symptoms, and changes in sleep patterns. Even though the disruption of sleep patterns in stress and anxiety and depressive disorders is well known, the independent effects of childhood trauma and stressful life events on sleep patterns are less understood. We tested the independent effects of stress (childhood trauma and stressful life events) while controlling for anxiety and depression on adolescent sleep patterns. Seven hundred fifty-two adolescents completed self-report questionnaires about childhood trauma, stressful life events, anxiety, and depression. Four sleep factors identifying movement during sleep, sleep regularity, sleep disturbances and sleep pressure were extracted in the principal component analysis of sleep questions. Both childhood trauma and recent stressful life events were significantly associated with sleep disturbances before and after controlling for anxiety and depression.
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: Huntington's disease; quality of life; family caregiving; reliability and validity; factor analysis; Poland
Online: 27 May 2019 (11:53:51 CEST)
Huntington's disease (HD) is a rare genetic neurodegenerative disorder that causes motor disorders, neuropsychiatric symptoms and a progressing deterioration of cognitive functions. Complex issues resulting from the hereditary nature of HD, the complexity of symptoms and the concealed onset of the disease have a great impact on the quality of life of family carers. The caregivers are called as “forgotten people” in HD family, also in genetic counseling. This study aims to explore the reliability and validity of the Huntington’s Disease Quality of Life Battery for carers (HDQoL-C) within a Polish population. 90 carers recruited from the Enroll-HD study in Polish research centres of the European Huntington`s Disease Network completed a polish translation of the HDQoL-C. Data was subjected to Principle Components Analysis and reliability measures. The Polish version of the shortened versions of the HDQoL–C is similarly valid compared to the original English version and suitable for use within this population. The HDQoL-C has previously demonstrated a wide range of benefits for practitioners in capturing and understanding carer experience and these benefits can now be extended to Polish speaking populations.
Thu, 23 May 2019
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201905.0285.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: Deficit schizophrenia, machine learning, cytokine, cognition, Immunological biomarkers
Online: 23 May 2019 (16:25:44 CEST)
No studies have examined the immune fingerprint of major neuro-cognitive psychosis (MNP) or deficit schizophrenia using M1 macrophage cytokines in combination with chemokines such as CCL-2 and CCL-11. The present study delineated the neuro-immune fingerprint of MNP/deficit schizophrenia by analyzing plasma levels of IL-1β, sIL-1RA, TNF-α, sTNFR1, sTNFR2, CCL-2 and CCL-11 in MNP (n=120) versus healthy controls (n=54) in association with neurocognitive deficits (as assessed with the Brief Assessment of Cognition in Schizophrenia) and PHEMN (psychotic, hostility, excitation, mannerism and negative) symptoms. All immune biomarkers were significantly higher in MNP than in normal controls. MNP was best predicted by a combination of CCL-11, TNF-α, IL-1β and sIL-1RA which yielded a bootstrapped (n=2000) area under the Receiver Operating Curve of 0.985. Composite scores reflecting M1 macrophage activity and neurotoxic potential including combined effects of CCL-11 plus CCL-2 were significantly increased in MNP. Nevertheless, the effects of increased IL-1β and TNF-α in MNP were attenuated (statistically) by increased sIL-1RA and sTNFR2, two negative immune-regulatory markers. A large part of the variance in PHEM (38.4%-52.6%) and negative (65.8-7439%) symptoms was explained by combinations of immune markers whereby CCL-11 was consistently the most important. The immune markers also explained a large part of the variance in the Mini Mental State examination, list learning, digit sequencing task, category instances, controlled word association, symbol coding and Tower of London. Soft Independent Modeling of Class Analogy performed on the biomarkers showed that the inter-class distance between the models constructed around MNP and controls was 19.3 indicating a good separation. Partial Least Squares analysis showed that 72.7% of the variance in overall phenomenology was explained by the regression on IL-1β, sIL-1RA, CCL-11, TNF-α (all positively) and education (inversely). It is concluded that the combination of the above-mentioned markers defines MNP as a distinct neuro-immune disorder and that those markers in combination explain a large part of the variance in memory and executivive impairments and PHEMN symptoms.
Tue, 16 April 2019
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201904.0176.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: depression; cytokines; inflammation; endogenous opioid; opioid receptor
Online: 16 April 2019 (09:49:14 CEST)
Background: There is now evidence that immune and opioid systems show functional reciprocal relationships and that both systems may participate in the pathophysiology of major depression (MDD). Objective: The present study was carried out to delineate differences between MDD patients and healthy controls in dynorphin and kappa opioid receptor (KORs) in association with levels of β-endorphins and mu opioid receptors (MORs), interleukin-6 (IL-6) and IL-10. Method: The present study recruited 60 drug-free male participants with MDD aged 24-70 year and 30 age-matched healthy males as control group and measured serum levels of dynorphin, KOR, β-endorphin, MOR, IL-6 and IL-10. Results: Serum dynorphin, KOR, β-endorphin and MOR are significantly increased in MDD as compared with controls. The increases in the dynorphin/KOR system and β-endorhin/MOR system are significantly intercorrelated and are both strongly associated with increased IL-6 and IL-10 levels. Dynorphin, β-endorphin, KOR and both cytokines showed a good diagnostic performance for MDD versus controls, whereby both opioid peptides and cytokines show a bootstrapped (n=2000) area under the receiver operating curve of 0.972. KOR and the dynorphin/KOR system are both significantly decreased in depressed subjects with comorbid nicotine dependence. Conclusion: Our findings suggest that in MDD, immune activation is associated with a simultaneous activation of dynorphin/KOR and β-endorhin/MOR signaling and that these opioid systems may participate in the pathophysiology of depression by a) exerting immune regulatory activities attenuating the primary immune response; and b) modulating reward responses and mood as well as emotional and behavioral responses to stress.
Mon, 25 March 2019
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: physical activity; depression; elderly people living alone; Patient Health Questionnaire-10; flexibility exercise; muscular strength exercise; complex sample logistic regression
Online: 25 March 2019 (11:10:17 CET)
Background and objectives: Only a few studies analyzed the physical activity level of elderly people living alone in local communities and evaluated the relationship between it and mental health. The purpose of this study was to investigate the relationship between physical activity and depression in the elderly living alone and to provide basic data for the prevention of depression in the elderly. Materials and Methods: We analyzed 256 elderly people living alone aged 65 years or older who completed the 2014 Korea National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey. Depression was defined as a score of 10 or higher using Patient Health Questionnaire-10(PHQ-9). This study investigated walking per week, days of muscular strength exercise performance in the past one week, days of flexibility exercise in the past one week, mean hours in a sitting position per day, the numbers of days and hours conducting a high intensity physical activity in the past one week, and numbers of days and hours conducting a medium intensity physical activity in the past one week to define physical activity. Our study presented prevalence odds ratios (pOR) and 95% confidence interval (CI) by using complex sample logistic regression analysis in order to identify the relationship between physical activity and depression. Results: The results of complex sample logistic regression analysis showed that flexibility exercise was significantly related to depression (p <0.05). On the other hand, the mean hours in a sitting position per day, aerobic physical activity, walking, and muscular strength exercise were not significantly related to geriatric depression. Conclusions: The results of our study implied that persistent flexibility exercise might be more effective to maintain a healthy mental status than muscular strength exercise. A longitudinal study is required to prove the causal relationship between physical activity and depression in the old age.
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: supervised learning, major depression, cytokines, inflammation, neuro-immune, opioids
Online: 25 March 2019 (10:14:02 CET)
Rationale: Major depressive disorder (MDD) is characterized by signaling aberrations in interleukin (IL)-6, IL-10, beta-endorphins as well as mu (MOR) and kappa (KOR) opioid receptors. Here we examined whether these biomarkers may aid in the classification of unknown subjects into the target class MDD.Methods: The aforementioned biomarkers were assayed in 60 first-episode, drug-naïve depressed patients and 30 controls. We analyzed the data using joint principal component analysis (PCA) performed on all subjects to check whether subjects cluster by classes; support vector machine (SVM) with 10-fold validation; and linear discriminant analysis (LDA) and SIMCA performed on calibration and validation sets and we computed the figures of merit and learnt from the data. Results: PCA shows that both groups were well separated using the first three PCs, while correlation loadings show that all 5 biomarkers have discriminatory value. SVM and LDA yielded an accuracy of 100% in validation samples. Using SIMCA there was a highly significant discrimination of both groups (model-to-model distance=87.5); all biomarkers showed a significant discrimination and modeling power, while 10% of the patients were identified as outsiders and no aliens could be identified.Discussion: We have delineated that MDD is a distinct class with respect to neuro-immune and opioid biomarkers and that future unknown subjects can be authenticated as having MDD using this SIMCA fingerprint. Precision psychiatry should employ SIMCA a) to authenticate patients as belonging to the claimed target class and identify other subjects as outsiders, members of another class or aliens; and b) to acquire knowledge through learning from the data by constructing a biomarker fingerprint of the target class.
Thu, 21 March 2019
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: premenstrual syndrome; depression; anxiety; fatigue; neuro-immune; progesterone
Online: 21 March 2019 (04:13:21 CET)
Objective: To examine associations between IgA responses to Gram-negative gut-commensal bacteria and peri-menstrual symptoms and sex hormone levels during the menstrual cycle in women with and without premenstrual symptoms. Methods: Forty women aged 18-45 years completed the Daily Record of Severity of Problems (DRSP) during all 28 consecutive days of the menstrual cycle. We assayed, in plasma,, IgA responses to 6 Gram-negative bacteria, i.e. Hafnei alvei, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Morganella morganii, Klebsiella pneumoniae, Pseudomonas putida and Citrobacter pylori, progesterone and oestradiol at days 7, 14, 21 and 28 of the menstrual cycle. Results: Significant changes in Δ (actual minus one week earlier) IgA to LPS of the 6 Gram-negative bacteria during the menstrual cycle were observed with peak IgA levels at T4 (day 28) and lows at T1 or T2 (day 7 or 14). The Δ IgA changes in H. alvei, M. Morganii, P. putida during the menstrual cycle were significantly and positively associated with changes in the total DRSP score, and severity of physio-somatic, anxiety and breast-craving, but not depressive, symptoms. The changes in IgA responses to LPS were largely predicted by changes in progesterone and steady-state levels of progesterone averaged over the luteal phase. Discussion: Menstrual cycle-associated changes in IgA directed against LPS and by inference bacterial translocation may be driven by effects of progesterone on transcellular, paracellular and vascular pathways thereby contributing to the severity of physio-somatic and anxiety symptoms as well as fatigue, breast swelling and food cravings.
Fri, 8 March 2019
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201903.0105.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: depression, bipolar disorder, oxidative and nitrosative stress, neuro-immune, inflammation, cytokines
Online: 8 March 2019 (09:13:40 CET)
Objective: Major depression (MDD) and a lifetime history of MDD are characterized by increased nitrosylation, while bipolar disorder type 1 (BP1), but not BP2, is accompanied by highly increased levels of oxidative stress and nitric oxide (NO) production. Nevertheless, it is unknown whether nitrosylation is involved in BP and whether there are differences in nitrosylation between BP1 and BP2.Methods: Serum IgM antibodies directed against nitroso (NO)-adducts were examined in MDD, BP1, BP2 and healthy controls, namely IgM responses to NO-cysteine, NO-tryptophan (NOW), NO-arginine and NO-albumin (SBA) in association with IgA/IgM responses to Gram-negative bacteria, IgG responses to oxidized low-density lipoprotein (oxLDL) and serum peroxides.Results: Serum IgM levels against NO adducts were significantly higher in BP1 and MDD as compared with healthy controls, whereas BP2 patients occupied an intermediate position. IgM responses to NO-albumin were significantly higher in BP1 and MDD than in BP2 patients. There were highly significant associations between the IgM responses to NO-adducts and IgG responses to oxLDL and IgA/IgM responses to Gram-negative bacteria.Conclusions: BP1 and MDD are characterized by an upregulation of the nitrosylome (the proteome of nitrosylated proteins), and increased IgM responses to nitrosylated conjugates. Increased nitrosylation may be driven by increased bacterial translocation and is associated with lipid peroxidation processes. Innate like (B1 and marginal zone) B cells and increased nitrosylation may play a key role in the major affective disorders through activation of immune-inflammatory and oxidative pathways, cardiovascular comorbidity and impairments in antioxidant defenses, neuro-glial interactions, synaptic plasticity, neuroprotection, neurogenesis, etc.
Tue, 26 February 2019
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201902.0236.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: depression; neuro-immune; cytokines; inflammation; indoleamine 2,3-dioxygenase
Online: 26 February 2019 (11:05:49 CET)
Major depressive disorder (MDD) is associated with changes in the levels of the cations calcium (Ca) and magnesium (Mg) as well as circulating pro- and anti-inflammatory cytokines. The immune-inflammatory nature of MDD has encouraged researchers to use anti-inflammatory drugs as an adjuvant treatment for MDD. However, the effect of this treatment on cation levels has not been studied. The present study examined a) differences in both cations between drug-naïve MDD patients and controls, and b) the effects of a combination of sertraline and ketoprofen, an anti-inflammatory drug, on Ca and Mg (both total and ionized). In the same patients we also examined the associations between both cations and IL-1β, IL-4, IL-6, IL-18, IFN-γ, TGF-β1, zinc and indoleamine 2,3-dioxygenase (IDO). Clinical improvement was estimated using the Beck Depression Inventory-II (BDI-II) at baseline and after follow up for two months. Serum Ca and Mg (total and ionized) were significantly lower in MDD patients as compared with controls, while treatment significantly increased calcium but decreased magnesium levels. There were significant and inverse correlations between the BDI-II scores from baseline to endpoint and Ca (both total and ionized), but not Mg, levels. The effects of calcium on the BDI-II score remained significant after considering the effects of zinc, IDO and an immune activation z unit weighted composite score based on the sum of all cytokines. There was a significant and inverse association between this immune activation index and calcium levels from baseline to endpoint. In conclusion, reduced levels of both cations play a role in the pathophysiology of major depression. Increased calcium levels are coupled to the clinical efficacy of antidepressants and attenuation of immune activation. The suppressant effect of antidepressants on Mg levels may be a side effect of those drugs. New antidepressant treatments should be developed that increase the levels both Ca and Mg.
Tue, 19 February 2019
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201902.0182.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: schizophrenia; inflammation; neuro-immune; oxidative stress; TRYCATs; leaky gut
Online: 19 February 2019 (12:14:29 CET)
Deficit schizophrenia is characterized by leaky tight and adherens junctions and bacterial translocation. Here we examine whether (deficit) schizophrenia is accompanied by leaky paracellular, transcellular and vascular barriers in the gut and blood brain barriers. We measured IgA responses to occludin, claudin-5, E-cadherin and β-catenin (paracellular pathway, PARA), talin, actin, vinculin and epithelial intermediate filament (transcellular pathway, TRANS) and plasmalemma vesicle-associated protein (PLVAP, vascular pathway) in 78 schizophrenia patients and 40 controls. IgA responses to claudin-5, E-cadherin and β-catenin, the sum of the four PARA proteins and the ratio PARA/TRANS were significantly higher in deficit schizophrenia than in non-deficit schizophrenia and controls. A large part of the variance in PHEMN (psychosis, hostility, excitation, mannerism and negative) symptoms, psychomotor retardation, formal thought disorders, verbal fluency, word list memory, word list recall and executive functions was explained by the PARA/TRANS ratio coupled with plasma IgA responses to Gram-negative bacteria, IgM to malondialdehyde, CCL-11 (eotaxin), IgA levels of the ratio of noxious to more protective tryptophan catabolites (NOX/PRO TRYCATs) and a plasma immune activation index. Moreover, IgA levels to Gram-negative bacteria were significantly associated with IgA to E-cadherin, β-catenin and PLVAP, while IgA levels to claudin-5 were significantly predicted by IgA to E-cadherin, NOX/PRO TRYCAT ratio, Gram-negative bacteria and CCL11. The phenomenology of the deficit syndrome is to a large extent explained by the cumulative effects of lowered natural IgM, breakdown of the paracellular and vascular pathways, increased bacterial translocation, peripheral immune-inflammatory responses and indices of BBB breakdown.
Fri, 15 February 2019
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201902.0142.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Psychiatry & Mental Health Studies Keywords: CIDER; post-traumatic stress disorder; trauma; adolescent; trauma-focused group psychotherapy
Online: 15 February 2019 (15:04:13 CET)