Biological explanations to psychopathology

Hand position test three-step hand sequence Copying tasks multiple loops Rhythm tapping tasks Cognitive tasks include the word fluency test, in which a patient is asked to generate, in 1 minute, as many words as possible beginning with a given letter. The normal is around Proverb or metaphor interpretation can be remarkably concrete. Problem-solving, for example carry-over additions and subtractions, can be tested by a simple question see Table 4.

Biological explanations to psychopathology

Family studies select people who already have depression - probands, and examine whether other members of their family have been or Biological explanations to psychopathology be diagnosed with depression.

They foudn a much higher incidence of sevre depression in the biological relatives of the depressed group than in the biological relatives of a non-depressed group. Genes as diatheses - Genetic factors Biological explanations to psychopathology though to act as a diatheses in a diathesis-stress relationship.

This suggests a genetic predisposition for depression interacting with environmental stressors to produce a depressive reaction. Therefore, expect such environmental stressors to affect those with the genetic predisposition differently to those without it.

The highest levels of depression were found in the group who were exposed to significant negative life events and were most genetically at risk for depression. Patients with the mutation failed to respond well to SSRI medications, which work via serotonin, suggesting that the mutation may underline a treatment-resistant subtype of depression.

The relatively low genetic comcordance rates for depression can be explained in terms of combordity, when 2 or more mental illness occur together and pherhaps have some common cause. People coul inherit a vulnerability for a wider range of disorders than depression alone.

Sugessting that some disorders such as depression are a product of genes that underline a number of different disorders.

Actual symptoms that develop could be related to environmental triggers, so genes are a diathesis in a diathesis-stress relationship.


Understanding of the genetics of depression among adolescents is limited. However, any conclusion about the heritability of MDD among adolescents can only be tentative as male twins were not included in sample - lacks population validity, also issues of social desirability bias as it was done over the phone can easily lie.

Among the findings linking low levels of noradrenaline to depression was the discovery that indirect markers of noradrenaline levels in the brain were often low in depressed individuals.

Post-mortem studies revealed increased densities of certain noradrenaline receptors in brains of depressed suicide victims.

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Transmitter molecules become unusually scare in synapses, postsynaptic cell often expand receptor numbers in as compensatory attempt to pick up whatever signals available.

Serotonin - Among findings supporting a link between low synaptic serotonin levels and depression is that cerebrospinal fluid in depressed and suicidal, patients contains reduced amounts of a mojor serotonin by-product, signifying reduced levels of serotonin in brain.

Intro of prozac that selectively block serotonin re-uptake confirmed the association between low serontonin and depression.

Biological explanations to psychopathology

Majority of the patients experienced a return of their depressive symptoms, which disappeared again when their diet was returned to normal. Patients showed a significantly more positive response that those treated witha placebo, thus strengthening the link between the depletion of these neurotransmitters and development of depressive symptoms.

Link between serotonin and depression is not straightforward.

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Some studies have used patients whose depression is in remission. These patients were given tryptophan-deficient amino acid that temporarily decreased serotonin levels in brain.

However, individuals who never had depression nor a family history of depression tended not to show any mood changes following tryptophan depletion, despite the fact that a depletion in this alters the activity of the same mood-regulating regions of the brain - amygdala.

Thus lowering, serotoinin levels does not induce depression in all individuals. Aan het Rot et al. The fact that depression is so widespread among humans suggests that it may have some evolutionary significance i. They are typically taken for at least months. Normal brains, neurotransmitters are constantly being released from nerve-endings.

To terminate their action, neurotransmitter are reabsorbed into nerve endings or broken down by an enzyme. Drug works by either reducing the rate of re-absorption or by blocking the enzyme that breaks down the neurotranmitters.

Both of these increase the amoutn of neurotransmitter avaible to excite neighbouring cells. As a result more of these neurotransmitters are left in synapse, prolonging their activity and making transmission of next impulse easier.

Selective serotonin re-uptake inhibitors SSRIs - block mainly serotonin and so increase the quantity available to excite neighbouring brain cells, thus reducing the symptoms of depression.

Phases of treatment - 3 distinct phases. Treatmens of current symptoms take place during acute phas eof treatment.

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Severity of depression - Kirsch et al. However, they also found that only for the most severely depressed group was there a difference between drug treatment and placebo.Honors Honors Program in the School of Biological Sciences.

The Honors Program in the School of Biological Sciences provides an opportunity for outstanding majors in the School to pursue advanced work in independent research via participation in the Excellence in Biological Sciences Research Program and earn Honors in Biological Sciences upon graduation.

In Freud's psychoanalytic theory of personality, the unconscious mind is a reservoir of feelings, thoughts, urges, and memories that outside of our conscious awareness. Most of the contents of the unconscious are unacceptable or unpleasant, such as feelings of pain, anxiety, or conflict.

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According to Freud, the unconscious continues to influence our behavior and experience, even though we are. Sep 21,  · The middle level - psychological explanations for behaviour The lowest level - biological explanations for behaviour Environmental reductionists believe that behaviour can be reduced to a relationship between behaviour and events in the environment and that behaviour is explained by past experiences.

Or perhaps psychological and biological concepts are not merely different terms for the same phenomena (with interreducible meanings)—psychological and biological explanations are not explanations of the same things.

What the board expects you to know: Explanations for food preferences: the evolutionary explanation, including reference to neophobia and taste aversion; the role of learning in food preference, including social and cultural influences.

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