Huntingtin Mediates Anxiety/depression-Related Behaviors and Hippocampal Neurogenesis.

Huntingtin mediates anxiety/depression-related behaviors and hippocampal neurogenesis.

J Neurosci. 2013 May 15; 33(20): 8608-20
Ben M’barek K, Pla P, Orvoen S, Benstaali C, Godin JD, Gardier AM, Saudou F, David DJ, Humbert S

Huntington disease (HD) is associated with early psychiatric symptoms including anxiety and depression. Here, we demonstrate that wild-type huntingtin, the protein mutated in HD, modulates anxiety/depression-related behaviors according to its phosphorylation at serines 1181 and 1201. Genetic phospho-ablation at serines 1181 and 1201 in mouse reduces basal levels of anxiety/depression-like behaviors. We observe that the reduction in anxiety/depression-like phenotypes is associated with increased adult hippocampal neurogenesis. By improving the attachment of molecular motors to microtubules, huntingtin dephosphorylation increases axonal transport of BDNF, a crucial factor for hippocampal adult neurogenesis. Consequently, the huntingtin-mediated increased BDNF dynamics lead to an increased delivery and signaling of hippocampal BDNF. These results support the notion that huntingtin participates in anxiety and depression-like behavior and is thus relevant to the etiology of mood disorders and anxiety/depression in HD. HubMed – depression


Global attractor alphabet of neural firing.

J Neurophysiol. 2013 May 15;
Baram Y

The elementary set, or alphabet, of neural firing modes is derived from the widely accepted conductance-based rectified firing-rate model. The firing dynamics of interacting neurons are shown to be governed by a multidimensional bilinear threshold discrete iteration map. The parameter-dependent global attractors of the map morph into twelve attractor types. Consistent with the dynamic modes observed in biological neuronal firing, the global attractor alphabet is highly visual and intuitive in the scalar, single neuron case. As synapse permeability varies from high depression to high potentiation, the global attractor type varies from chaotic to multiplexed, oscillatory, fixed and saturated. As membrane permeability decreases, the global attractor transforms from active to passive state. Under the same activation, learning and retrieval end at the same global attractor. The bilinear threshold structure of the multidimensional map associated with interacting neurons generalizes the global attractor alphabet of neuronal firing modes to multi-neuron systems. Selective positive or negative activation and neural interaction yields combinatorial revelation and concealment of stored neuronal global attractors. HubMed – depression


Beliefs of Australian health professionals about the helpfulness of interventions for mental disorders: Differences between professions and change over time.

Aust N Z J Psychiatry. 2013 May 15;
Morgan AJ, Jorm AF, Reavley NJ

Objective:To assess the beliefs of general practitioners (GPs), psychiatrists and clinical psychologists about the helpfulness of different interventions for mental disorders, and to examine change in beliefs over time.Methods:A questionnaire was mailed to 6848 GPs, psychiatrists and clinical psychologists registered with Medicare Australia. The questionnaire was based around one of six vignettes describing a person with a mental disorder: depression, depression with suicidal thoughts, early schizophrenia, chronic schizophrenia, social phobia and post-traumatic stress disorder. The depression and early schizophrenia vignettes were identical to those used in a similar survey of health professionals conducted in 1996. A range of interventions were rated for their likely helpfulness for each disorder, and consensus was defined as at least 66% of each profession rating an intervention as helpful.Results:Responses were received from 1536 health professionals. A broader array of interventions were endorsed for depression than in 1996, including GPs, psychiatrists, psychologists, becoming more physically active, reading about people with similar problems and how they have dealt with them, psychotherapy, and cognitive behaviour therapy. For the schizophrenia vignettes, GPs, psychiatrists and antipsychotics were thought to be helpful by a majority of professionals. A variety of professionals, psychological treatments and lifestyle activities were endorsed for the anxiety disorders. Differences between professions were noted in beliefs about the helpfulness of antidepressants and counsellors for anxiety disorders and depression, as well as cognitive behaviour therapy for schizophrenia.Conclusion:Consensus across professions was reached on the helpfulness of a variety of interventions for each mental disorder, although there were some notable differences in beliefs. The study gives an updated overview of treatment beliefs for mental disorders by Australian health professionals, which can be used as a benchmark with which to compare the beliefs of the Australian public. HubMed – depression


Universality of Bereavement Life Review for Spirituality and Depression in Bereaved Families.

Am J Hosp Palliat Care. 2013 May 14;
Ando M, Sakaguchi Y, Shiihara Y, Izuhara K

The present study aimed to investigate the effects of the Bereavement Life Review on depression and spiritual well-being of bereaved families in a setting that does not specialize in palliative care. The participants were 20 bereaved family members who underwent the Bereavement Life Review over 2 sessions in 2 weeks. Beck Depression Inventory Second Edition scores significantly decreased from 14.4 ± 9.2 to 11.6 ± 7.4 (t = 2.15, P = .045) and Functional Assessment Chronic Illness Therapy-Spiritual scores increased from 24.3 ± 10.1 to 25.9 ± 11 (t = -1.0, P = .341) from pre- to postintervention. These results show that the Bereavement Life Review can decrease depression and improve spiritual well-being of bereaved families after the death of a family member in a setting without specialized palliative care. The results also suggest the universality of this therapy. HubMed – depression