Brain imaging identifies bipolar risk
(Medical Xpress)—Researchers from the Black Dog Institute and University of NSW have used brain imaging technology to show that young people with a known genetic risk of bipolar but no clinical signs of the condition have clear and quantifiable differences in brain activity when compared to controls.
"We found that the young people who had a parent or sibling with bipolar disorder had reduced brain responses to emotive faces, particularly a fearful face. This is an extremely promising breakthrough," says study leader Professor Philip Mitchell.
Affecting around 1 in 75 Australians, bipolar disorder involves extreme and often unpredictable fluctuations in mood. The mood swings and associated behaviours such as disinhibited behaviour, aggression and severe depression, have a significant impact on day-to-day life, careers and relationships. Bipolar has the highest suicide rate of all psychiatric disorders.
"We know that bipolar is primarily a biological illness with a strong genetic influence but triggers are yet to be understood. Being able to identify young people at risk will enable implementation of early intervention programs, giving them the best chance for a long and happy life," says Prof Mitchell.
Researchers used functional MRI to visualise brain activity when participants were shown pictures of happy, fearful or calm (neutral) human faces. Results showed that those with a genetic risk of bipolar displayed significantly reduced brain activity in a specific part of the brain known to regulate emotional responses.
"Our results show that bipolar disorder may be linked to a dysfunction in emotional regulation and this is something we will continue to explore," Professor Mitchell said.
"And we now have an extremely promising method of identifying children and young people at risk of bipolar disorder."
"We expect that early identification will significantly improve outcomes for people that go on to develop bipolar disorder, and possibly even prevent onset in some people."
Results are published this week in Biological Psychiatry and come from the NHMRC-funded 'Kids and Sibs study', the biggest research study in the world focusing on genetic and environmental aspects of bipolar disorder. Based at the Black Dog Institute, the trial is still recruiting.
Journal reference: Biological Psychiatry
Provided by University of New South Wales
- Patterns of brain activity in response of emotional faces may help diagnose bipolar disorder Jun 19, 2012 | not rated yet | 0
- Having parents with bipolar disorder associated with increased risk of psychiatric disorders Mar 02, 2009 | not rated yet | 0
- Facial expressions have greater impact on kids with bipolar disorder Nov 26, 2007 | not rated yet | 0
- Scientists pinpoint gene variations linked to higher risk of bipolar disorder Oct 10, 2012 | not rated yet | 0
- Comorbidities common in bipolar disorder, may have genetic link Jun 08, 2007 | not rated yet | 0
- Motion perception revisited: High Phi effect challenges established motion perception assumptions Apr 23, 2013 | 3 / 5 (2) | 2
- Anything you can do I can do better: Neuromolecular foundations of the superiority illusion (Update) Apr 02, 2013 | 4.5 / 5 (11) | 5
- The visual system as economist: Neural resource allocation in visual adaptation Mar 30, 2013 | 5 / 5 (2) | 9
- Separate lives: Neuronal and organismal lifespans decoupled Mar 27, 2013 | 4.9 / 5 (8) | 0
- Sizing things up: The evolutionary neurobiology of scale invariance Feb 28, 2013 | 4.8 / 5 (10) | 14
How can there be villous adenoma in colon, if there are no villi there
7 hours ago As title suggest. Thanks :smile:
How can there be a term called "intestinal metaplasia" of stomach
May 21, 2013 Hello everyone, Ok Stomach's normal epithelium is simple columnar, now in intestinal type of adenocarcinoma of stomach it undergoes "intestinal...
Pressure-volume curve: Elastic Recoil Pressure don't make sense
May 18, 2013 From pressure-volume curve of the lung and chest wall (attached photo), I don't understand why would the elastic recoil pressure of the lung is...
If you became brain-dead, would you want them to pull the plug?
May 17, 2013 I'd want the rest of me to stay alive. Sure it's a lousy way to live but it beats being all-the-way dead. Maybe if I make it 20 years they'll...
MRI bill question
May 15, 2013 Dear PFers, The hospital gave us a $12k bill for one MRI (head with contrast). The people I talked to at the hospital tell me that they do not...
Ratio of Hydrogen of Oxygen in Dessicated Animal Protein
May 13, 2013 As an experiment, for the past few months I've been consuming at least one portion of Jell-O or unflavored Knox gelatin per day. I'm 64, in very...
- More from Physics Forums - Medical Sciences
More news stories
(Medical Xpress)—Preschoolers universally recognize that one's choices are not always free – that our decisions may be constrained by social obligations to be nice to others or follow rules set by parents ...
Psychology & Psychiatry 6 hours ago | not rated yet | 0
(Medical Xpress)—Do ethicists engage in better moral behavior than other professors? The answer is no. Nor are they more likely than nonethicists to act according to values they espouse, according to researchers from the ...
Psychology & Psychiatry 6 hours ago | 5 / 5 (1) | 0
Is it permissible to harm one to save many? Those who tend to say "yes" when faced with this classic dilemma are likely to be deficient in a specific kind of empathy, according to a report published in the scientific journal ...
Psychology & Psychiatry 9 hours ago | not rated yet | 1 |
(HealthDay)—The monstrous tornado that devastated Moore, Okla., on Monday, killing dozens of adults and children, is a stunning example of violent weather that can affect a child's mental well-being.
Psychology & Psychiatry 22 hours ago | not rated yet | 0
Youth who had a schoolmate die by suicide are significantly more likely to consider or attempt suicide, according to a study in published in CMAJ (Canadian Medical Association Journal). This effect can last 2 years or mo ...
Psychology & Psychiatry May 21, 2013 | not rated yet | 0
In a series of lab experiments designed to unravel the workings of a key enzyme widely considered a possible trigger of rheumatoid arthritis, researchers at Johns Hopkins have found that in the most severe ...
39 minutes ago | not rated yet | 0 |
Researchers have developed a new drug delivery system that allows inhalation of chemotherapeutic drugs to help treat lung cancer, and in laboratory and animal tests it appears to reduce the systemic damage ...
49 minutes ago | not rated yet | 0 |
Moving objects attract greater attention – a fact exploited by video screens in public spaces and animated advertising banners on the Internet. For most animal species, moving objects also play a major ...
53 minutes ago | not rated yet | 0 |
In the long run, encouraging a baby to finish the last ounce in their bottle might be doing more harm than good.
51 minutes ago | not rated yet | 0 |
When turned on, the gene p53 turns off cancer. However, when existing drugs boost p53, only a few tumors die – the rest resist the challenge. A study published in the journal Cell Reports shows how: tumors that live even i ...
52 minutes ago | not rated yet | 0 |
Children living in households where the parents are married are less likely to be obese, according to new research from Rice University and the University of Houston.
47 minutes ago | not rated yet | 0