Research

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In addition to helping patients find the optimal therapeutic approach to their mental health concerns, we provide patients and other mental healthcare providers with resources and research to expand their knowledge of effective treatment methods and groundbreaking developments in the world of psychiatry. Explore our library of content below.

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Play, ADHD, and the Construction of the Social Brain Jaak Panksepp

Because of the role of play in the epigenetic construction of social brain functions, the young of all mammalian species need sufficient play. For the same reason, the nature of that play becomes an important social policy issue for early childhood development and education. Animal research on this topic indicates that play can facilitate the maturation of behavioral inhibition in growing animals, while psychostimulants reduce playfulness. According to the research, our failure to provide adequate opportunities for natural play in modern societies may have contributed to the steady growth in the diagnosis of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorders (ADHD) in children.

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High-Dose Eicosapentaenoic Acid (EPA) in ADHD Treatment Jane Pei-Chen Chang

In this study researchers conducted a 12-week, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial comparing the effects of high-dose eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA, 1.2 g) and placebo on cognitive function (continuous performance test) in 92 youth (age 6–18-years-old) with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD). Blood erythrocytes PUFAs were measured before and after treatment, to examine the effects of baseline endogenous EPA levels on treatment response and the effects of EPA treatment on PUFAs levels.

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Neurobehavioural Effects of Developmental Toxicity Philippe Grandjean, Philip J Landrigan

Neurodevelopmental disabilities, including autism, attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder, dyslexia, and other cognitive impairments, affect millions of children worldwide, and some diagnoses seem to be increasing in frequency. Industrial chemicals that injure the developing brain are among the known causes for this rise in prevalence. In this 2006 study, researchers completed a systematic review and identified five industrial chemicals as developmental neurotoxicants: lead, methylmercury, polychlorinated biphenyls, arsenic, and toluene with the possibility of others that may be unknown in the environment.

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The Microbiome

The microbiome consists of microbes that are both helpful and potentially harmful. Most are symbiotic (where both the human body and microbiota benefit) and some, in smaller numbers, are pathogenic (promoting disease). In a healthy body, pathogenic and symbiotic microbiota coexist without problems. But if there is a disturbance in that balance—brought on by infectious illnesses, certain diets, or the prolonged use of antibiotics or other bacteria-destroying medications—dysbiosis occurs, stopping these normal interactions. As a result, the body may become more susceptible to disease. This article provides information about the microbiome and its affect on mental health.

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Epigenetic Mechanisms of Depression Eric J. Nestler, MD, PhD

Growing evidence supports the hypothesis that epigenetics is a key mechanism through which environmental exposures interact with an individual’s genetic constitution to determine risk for depression throughout life. Epigenetics, in its broadest meaning, refers to stable changes in gene expression that are mediated via altered chromatin structure without modification of DNA sequence. According to this hypothesis, severe stress triggers changes—in vulnerable individuals—in chromatin structure at particular genomic loci in the brain’s limbic regions, which drive sustained changes in gene expression that contribute to episodes of depression.

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Targeted Nutrient Therapy in Treatment of Mental Illness Richard Stuckey, MB.BS., DRCOG; William Walsh, PhD; Brett Lambert

In a pilot study aimed at investigating the effectiveness of targeted nutrient therapy, the clinical progress of 567 patients with a range
of mental illnesses receiving established medical treatment in conjunction with a targeted nutrient program were assessed by clinical outcome after 12 months.

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Assessment of Psychotropic-like Properties of a Probiotic Formulation Michaël Messaoudi

In a previous clinical study, a probiotic formulation (PF) consisting of Lactobacillus helveticus R0052 and Bifidobacterium longum R0175 (PF) decreased stress-induced gastrointestinal discomfort. Emerging evidence of a role for gut microbiota on central nervous system functions therefore suggests that oral intake of probiotics may have beneficial consequences on mood and psychological distress. The aim of the present study was to investigate the anxiolytic-like activity of PF in rats, and its possible effects on anxiety, depression, stress and coping strategies in healthy human volunteers.

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The Science and Pseudoscience of Women’s Mental Health Sharna Olfman, PhD

In this article, the interviewer speaks with Dr. Kelly Brogan, a leading voice in natural approaches to women’s mental health. With degrees from MIT and Weil Cornell Medical College, triple board certification in psychiatry, psychosomatic medicine and integrative holistic medicine, and direct experience practicing within the parameters of conventional psychiatry, Dr. Brogan is uniquely qualified to challenge the pseudoscience of the chemical imbalance theory and the drug regimens that it spawned. This conversation addressed Dr. Brogan’s grave concerns about the recent rollout of Zulresso (brexanolone), a drug specifically designed, and approved by the FDA for the treatment of Postpartum Depression.

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Advice to Young Psychiatrists From a Very Old One Allen Frances, MD

Dr. Allen Frances, former Chair of Department of Psychiatry, gives the 50 most important things he has learned in his 50 years studying psychiatry. This list is to better help young psychiatrists better advocate for their patients.

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The Best Foods for Vitamins and Minerals Matthew Sloan

The best approach to ensure you get a variety of vitamins and minerals, and in the proper amounts, is to adopt a broad healthy diet. This involves an emphasis on fruits and vegetables, whole grains, beans and legumes, low-fat protein, and dairy products. The good news is that many common foods contain multiple mineral and vitamin sources, so it is easy to meet your daily needs from everyday meals.

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How to End Migranes Mark Hyman , MD

More than 10 million Americans have migraines creating a burden of mostly unnecessary suffering. These severe, nearly disabling headaches can occur anywhere from once a year to three to four times a week. They can last from hours to days. Dr. Mark Hyman reveals that proper nutrition and gut health can have positive effects on reducing migraines. Food allergies, hormonal imbalances, chemical triggers, or a magnesium deficiency are often root causes of consistent migraines.

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Vitamin D and Omega-3 Long Chain Polyunsaturated Fatty Acids in the Treatment of Core Symptoms of Autism Spectrum Disorder Hajar Mazahery

A randomized-controlled trial conducted by Mazahery, Hajar, Conlon, Kathryn, et al evaluated the efficacy of vitamin D (VID), omega-3 long chain polyunsaturated fatty acids (omega-3 LCPUFA, OM), or both (VIDOM) on core symptoms of ASD. New Zealand children with ASD (n = 73; aged 2.5-8.0 years) received daily 2000 IU vitamin D3, 722 mg docosahexaenoic acid, both, or placebo. Outcome measures were Social Responsiveness Scale and Sensory Processing Measure. Of the 42 outcome measures comparisons, two showed greater improvements and four showed trends for greater improvements. Omega-3 LCPUFA with and without Vitamin D may improve some core symptoms of ASD but no definitive conclusions were made in this study.

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