News Round-Up: 17-23rd August 2008


In the journal Medical Hypotheses, Dezfulian and colleagues propose a role for chlamydia pneumonia in the disease process (STT5). Sarkar and Rubisztein review the process of autophagy, whereby a cell breaks down its own constituents and review a number of promising related agents that may be useful in neurodegenerative disorders (STT4). Krinsky-McHale and colleagues published the results of a new test which can help in the early identification of Alzheimer’s disease in people with Down’s syndrome (STT2). Administration of Memantine to women at risk of Alzheimer’s impaired memory and verbal learning while improving executive functioning (STT3). Vascular resistance was associated with vascular dementia but not Alzheimer’s in another study (STT4).


One study showed a relationship between self-referential source memory (keeping track of one’s own responses) and social cognition in people with schizophrenia (STT4). A case of limbic encephalitis causing psychosis is described in CNS Spectrum. The limbic encephalitis resulted from antibodies to an NMDA receptor (STT1). Bentall and Fernyhough propose an environmental model of aetiology in psychosis in the Schizophrenia Bulletin (STT4). The results of one study suggest that If mothers in second month of pregnancy during the six day war they were 4.2 more likely to have children with schizophrenia than mother’s pregnant at other times (STT3).


Some recent research has drawn attention to the potential for fruit juices (orange, apple and grapefruit juice) to interact with certain medications (STT1-2). A link has been suggested between vascular endothelial growth factor and the size of the hippocampus (STT3). An editorial in the American Journal of Psychiatry looks at internet addiction. A request by the Indian Psychiatric Association for judges to have psychiatric training has been made. A National Conference on Depression has been held in Pakistan where it has been reported that there are 400 psychiatrists for each 1.6 million of the population and where alternative methods of treatment for mental illness may be favoured in some parts of the country.

Child and Adolescent Psychiatry

Research has shown that the amount of REM sleep children and adolescents get can determine their likelihood to develop obesity (STT3). A Children’s Medication Algorithm Project has been put on hold allegedly due to an examination of potential conflicts of interest. Over at the PsychCentral Blog, John Grohal writes about new research supporting certain non-pharmaceutical approaches to ADHD in children which was presented at a meeting of the American Psychological Association (STT2). The American Psychiatric Association has called on NBC to pull a program ‘The Baby Borrowers’ in which babies are looked after by another family for three days.

The Arts and Psychiatry

There is a new play exploring psychiatry in the IndyFringe Festival in Indianapolis, USA – Dr Goddard and Mr Angst. A psychoanalyst’s exploration of liberalism has been published recently – ‘Talking Back to Liberal Power’.




The comments made here represent the opinions of the author and do not represent the profession or any body/organisation. The comments made here are not meant as a source of medical advice and those seeking medical advice are advised to consult with their own doctor. The author is not responsible for the contents of any external sites that are linked to in this blog.

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