A new retrospective interview assessment of childhood psychological abuse, an extension to the Childhood Experience of Care and Abuse (CECA) instrument, is described in a companion article (Moran, Bifulco, Ball, Jacobs, & Benaim, 2002). The purpose of the present article is to examine the relationship of childhood psychological abuse to other adverse childhood experiences and to major depression and suicidal behavior in adult life. Childhood experience and lifetime disorder were assessed retrospectively in a high-risk, community series of London women (n = 204).
Progress in Neuro-Psychopharmacology & Biological Psychiatry
Suicide behavior (SB) spans a spectrum ranging from suicidal ideation to suicide attempts and completed suicide. Strong evidence suggests a genetic susceptibility to SB, including familial heritability and common occurrence in twins. This review addresses recent molecular genetic studies in SB that include case-control association, genome gene-expression microarray, and genome-wide association (GWA). This work also reviews epigenetics in SB and pharmacogenetic studies of antidepressant-induced suicide.
Vulnerability to suicidal behavior (SB) is likely mediated by an underlying genetic predisposition interacting with environmental and probable epigenetic factors throughout the lifespan to modify the function of neuronal circuits, thus rendering an individual more likely to engage in a suicidal act. Improving our understanding of the neuroscience underlying SBs, both attempts and completions, at all developmental stages is crucial for more effective preventive treatments and for better identification of vulnerable individuals.
Depression is a prevalent, highly debilitating mental disorder affecting up to 15% of the population at least once in their lifetime, with huge costs for society. Neurobiological mechanisms of depression are still not well known, although there is consensus about interplay between genetic and environmental factors. Antidepressant medications are frequently used in depression, but at least 50% of patients are poor responders, even to more recently discovered medications.
The authors of this paper present a review of actual data on the neurobiological background of suicidal behaviour. The results of epidemiological studies suggest that suicidal behaviours have certain genetic background which do not depend on the presence of concomitant mental disorders. The estimated heritability rate of suicide is about 21-50%, while the heritability rate of suicidal ideation and behaviour is about 30-55%. The genes of serotonergic and noradrenergic systems, as well as the HPA axis genes, have been scrutinised in context of suicidal behaviour.
Suicidal behaviour in youth is a major public health concern worldwide, and youth in the early stages of a primary mood disorder are an identifiable high-risk population. Neurobiological research in youth at risk for suicidality has sought to investigate the most promising parameters from research in adults. The present paper provides an overview of the current findings of neurobiological research in children and adolescents with mood disorders and suicidality including genetic/epigenetic findings, neuro-hormonal and immunological investigations.
Recently, a significant epigenetic component in the pathology of suicide has been realized. Here we investigate candidate functional SNPs in epigenetic-regulatory genes, DNMT1 and DNMT3B, for association with suicide attempt (SA) among patients with co-existing psychiatric illness. In addition, global DNA methylation levels [5-methyl cytosine (5-mC%)] between SA and psychiatric controls were quantified using the Methylflash Methylated DNA Quantification Kit. DNA was obtained from blood of 79 suicide attempters and 80 non-attempters, assessed for DSM-IV Axis I disorders.
BACKGROUND: Suicide is the act of intentionally causing one's own death. The lifetime suicide risk in schizophrenia is 4.9% and 20% to 50% of patients with SCZ will attempt suicide during their life. The other risk factors for suicidal behavior in schizophrenia include prior history of suicide attempts, active psychosis, depression and substance abuse. To date, there are no robust genetic or epigenetic predictors of suicide or suicide attempt in this specific population.
OBJECTIVE: Childhood maltreatment increases risk for psychopathology. For some highly prevalent disorders (major depression, substance abuse, anxiety disorders, and posttraumatic stress disorder) a substantial subset of individuals have a history of maltreatment and a substantial subset do not. The authors examined the evidence to assess whether those with a history of maltreatment represent a clinically and biologically distinct subtype.
INTRODUCTION: Suicide is a major health problem, and depression is a major psychiatric cause of suicide. Suicide is influenced by the multifactorial interaction of many risk factors. Therefore, epigenetic research may lead to understandings that are applicable to suicide. This study investigated whether epigenetic changes are associated with suicidal behavior and evaluated the treatment outcome of suicidal ideation in depressive patients. METHODS: In 108 patients with major depression, the promoter methylation of the gene encoding brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) was measured.