Research News

Research News Image

Physical Activity In Youth Linked to Better Mental Health In Early Adulthood

Feb 11 2020
New research from the U.K. shows a strong relationship between early-life physical activity and depressive symptoms later in life. Using simple wearable technology, researchers captured more reliable data than previous studies that depended on self-report. More than 4,000 participants provided physical activity data at ages 12, 14 and 16 and then completed a depression screening at age 18. The data showed that every additional hour of light physical activity per day at age 12 was associated with a 10% reduction in depressive symptoms at age 18. To learn more, see the article from The Lancet Psychiatry.

Research News Image

New Report Highlights Importance of Suicide Risk Screening for Nurses

Feb 03 2020
A new study shows that nurses are at an increased risk of suicide compared to the general population, and this increased risk has been present since at least 2005 (the earliest year that comprehensive data is available). Nurses who died by suicide were more likely than the general population to have known stressors at work and were more likely to complete suicide by medication overdose. These factors highlight the importance of workplace screening and wellness programs. To learn more, see the article from Worldviews on Evidence-Based Nursing.

Research News Image

New Evidence Shows Online Tools Can Be Effective Supplemental Depression Treatment

Jan 29 2020
Many people who recover from major depression through standard care models still experience lingering issues with sleep, energy and worry. To support long-term wellness, researchers created an online version of mindfulness-based cognitive therapy called Mindful Mood Balance (MMB). In a randomized trial, individuals who engaged with the MMB program in addition to conventional care experienced greater improvement in depressive and anxious symptoms, higher rates of recovery and higher quality of life compared to individuals who only received conventional care. To learn more, see the study in JAMA Psychiatry.

Research News Image

Department of Justice Announces Major Funding Opportunity for Research on Community Reentry

Jan 22 2020
The National Institute of Justice (NIJ), a division of the U.S. Department of Justice, has announced the availability of $6 million in grant funding for research on reenty initiatives. Reentry initiatives provide social services, skills training and connections to treatment for people returning to the community after a period of incarceration. Successful initiatives improve health and social outcomes and reduce future criminal justice involvement. By studying current initiatives, NIJ hopes to identify best practices that can be applied in more communities. Applications for grant funding are due on May 5, 2020. To learn more, see the announcement from NIJ.

Research News Image

Report Connects High Caseloads to Poorer Health Outcomes in College Counseling Centers

Jan 14 2020
The Center for Collegiate Mental Health (CCMH), a project facilitated by researchers at Penn State University, has released their 2019 Annual Report describing the landscape of counseling services at colleges and universities across the country. For the first time, CCMH has included a metric to measure campus counseling centers’ caseloads. Using this new metric, the report shows that higher caseloads are associated with fewer and less frequent appointments. Clients also report significantly less improvement in depression, anxiety and distress at high-caseload centers compared to low-caseload centers. To learn more, see the full report on the CCMH website.

Research News Image

New Results From The Million Veteran Program Reveal Six Genes Linked To Anxiety

Jan 07 2020
The Million Veteran Program is one of the world’s largest biobanks including the genetic, medical and environmental information of U.S. veterans. Researchers have completed the largest-ever genome-wide association study of anxiety traits using data from nearly 2,000 individuals in the program. The analysis identified six gene variants linked to anxiety, establishing clear directions for further research. One of these gene variants is also linked to bipolar disorder and schizophrenia, and others are linked to a gene that regulates the processing of estrogen. To learn more, see the article from the American Journal of Psychiatry.

Research News Image

Two-Thirds of Los Angeles County Jail Inmates With Mental Illness Potentially Eligible For Diversion

Jan 06 2020
Diversion programs redirect people with mental illness away from traditional criminal justice processing to community-based treatment. This practice improves health outcomes and reduces future justice system involvement. To help determine how it should invest in expanding community-based services in the future, Los Angeles County commissioned a study of its jail population. The study showed that 61% of people with mental illness currently incarcerated in LA County jails were candidates for diversion, and an additional 7% were potential candidates. To learn more, see the report from the RAND Corporation.   
 

Research News Image

Patterns In Reward Learning May Be Important Markers For Schizophrenia Risk

Dec 30 2019
Reward learning is the subconscious process of adjusting your behavior in response to positive experiences. Past research has shown that people with schizophrenia spectrum disorders (SZ) experience impairments in reward learning, which can cause difficulties in social functioning and relationships. A new study shows that first-degree relatives of people with SZ also experience this impairment compared to people who do not have a family history of SZ. Although further research is needed, this indicates that reward learning patterns are a marker of family risk, rather than a symptom of SZ. To learn more, see the article from Schizophrenia Research.

Research News Image

NIH Study Measures Risk of Death by Suicide Following Emergency Department Visit

Dec 13 2019
More than 500,000 people go to the emergency department (ED) each year due to deliberate self-harm or thoughts of suicide. A new study linking California ED data with state death records shows that people who presented to an ED with deliberate self-harm had a suicide rate nearly 57 times higher than demographically similar Californians in the year following discharge. Individuals with certain mental health conditions, and particularly individuals who had a firearm injury, were at higher risk. To learn more, visit the NIMH website

Research News Image

National Institute of Mental Health Releases Draft Strategic Plan For Research

Dec 02 2019
Every five years, the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) creates a Strategic Plan for Research. As the lead federal agency for research on mental illness, the NIMH is responsible for guiding and supporting research in basic, translational and clinical science. The Strategic Plan acts as a roadmap to establish their priorities, impacting millions of dollars invested in research grants. The NIMH released a draft of the 2020-2025 Strategic Plan for Research and welcomes comments from the community. To view the draft Strategic Plan, please visit the NIMH website.