Publications by authors named "Femke Lamers"

120 Publications

Clinical judgment of the need for professional mental health care in patients with cancer: a qualitative study among oncologists and nurses.

J Cancer Surviv 2021 Dec 2. Epub 2021 Dec 2.

Department of Psychiatry, Amsterdam University Medical Centers, Vrije Universiteit, Amsterdam Public Health Research Institute, PO Box 7057, 1007 MB, Amsterdam, the Netherlands.

Purpose: In daily practice, oncologists and nurses frequently need to decide whether or not to refer a patient for professional mental health care. We explored the indicators oncologists and nurses use to judge the need for professional mental health care in patients with cancer.

Methods: In a qualitative study, oncologists (n = 8) and nurses (n = 6) were each asked to select patients who were or were not referred for professional mental health care (total n = 75). During a semi-structured interview, they reflected on their decision concerning the possible referral of the patient. Thematic analysis was used to analyze the data.

Results: Respondents reported using a strategy when judging whether professional mental health care was needed. They allowed patients time to adjust, while monitoring patients' psychological well-being, especially if patients exhibited specific risk factors. Risk and protective factors for emotional problems included personal, social, and disease- and treatment-related factors. Respondents considered referral for professional mental health care when they noted specific indicators of emotional problems. These indicators included lingering or increasing emotions, a disproportionate intensity of emotions, and emotions with a negative impact on a patient's daily life or treatment.

Conclusions: This study identified the strategy, risk and protective factors, and the indicators of emotional problems used by oncologists and nurses when judging the need for professional mental health care in patients with cancer.

Implications For Cancer Survivors: Oncologists and nurses can play an important role in the identification of patients in need of professional mental health care.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s11764-021-01151-2DOI Listing
December 2021

Fatigue in patients with chronic disease: results from the population-based Lifelines Cohort Study.

Sci Rep 2021 Oct 25;11(1):20977. Epub 2021 Oct 25.

Department of Medical Psychology, Amsterdam Public Health Research Institute, Amsterdam University Medical Centers, University of Amsterdam, Amsterdam, The Netherlands.

(1) To evaluate the prevalence of severe and chronic fatigue in subjects with and without chronic disease; (2) to assess to which extent multi-morbidity contributes to severe and chronic fatigue; and (3) to identify predisposing and associated factors for severe and chronic fatigue and whether these are disease-specific, trans-diagnostic, or generic. The Dutch Lifelines cohort was used, including 78,363 subjects with (n = 31,039, 53 ± 12 years, 33% male) and without (n = 47,324, 48 ± 12 years, 46% male) ≥ 1 of 23 chronic diseases. Fatigue was assessed with the Checklist Individual Strength-Fatigue. Compared to participants without a chronic disease, a higher proportion of participants with ≥ 1 chronic disease were severely (23% versus 15%, p < 0.001) and chronically (17% versus 10%, p < 0.001) fatigued. The odds of having severe fatigue (OR [95% CI]) increased from 1.6 [1.5-1.7] with one chronic disease to 5.5 [4.5-6.7] with four chronic diseases; for chronic fatigue from 1.5 [1.5-1.6] to 4.9 [3.9-6.1]. Multiple trans-diagnostic predisposing and associated factors of fatigue were found, explaining 26% of variance in fatigue in chronic disease. Severe and chronic fatigue are highly prevalent in chronic diseases. Multi-morbidity increases the odds of having severe and chronic fatigue. Several trans-diagnostic factors were associated with fatigue, providing a rationale for a trans-diagnostic approach.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41598-021-00337-zDOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8546086PMC
October 2021

Inflammation and depression in young people: a systematic review and proposed inflammatory pathways.

Mol Psychiatry 2021 Oct 11. Epub 2021 Oct 11.

Orygen, Parkville, VIC, Australia.

Depression onset peaks during adolescence and young adulthood. Current treatments are only moderately effective, driving the search for novel pathophysiological mechanisms underlying youth depression. Inflammatory dysregulation has been shown in adults with depression, however, less is known about inflammation in youth depression. This systematic review identified 109 studies examining the association between inflammation and youth depression and showed subtle evidence for inflammatory dysregulation in youth depression. Longitudinal studies support the bidirectional association between inflammation and depression in youth. We hypothesise multiple inflammatory pathways contributing to depression. More research is needed on anti-inflammatory treatments, potentially tailored to individual symptom profiles.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41380-021-01306-8DOI Listing
October 2021

Insulin resistance as a marker for the immune-metabolic subtype of depression.

J Affect Disord 2021 12 1;295:1371-1376. Epub 2021 Sep 1.

Amsterdam UMC and GGZ inGeest, Dept. of Psychiatry, Amsterdam Public Health Research Institute, Vrije Universiteit, De Boelelaan 1117, 1081 HV, Postbus, 7075, 1007 MB, Amsterdam, the Netherlands.

Objective: Insulin resistance (IR), a marker of metabolic dysregulation and pro-inflammatory state, moderates the antidepressant treatment effect in patients with type 2 diabetes (T2D) and is therefore a potential marker for personalized treatment. Based on data from a light therapy trial (NTR4942), we aimed to evaluate whether 1) depression symptoms differ according to the level of IR, and 2) improvement of specific depression symptoms drive the positive effects of light therapy in those with higher IR.

Methods: This secondary analysis in 59 individuals with depression and T2D explored differences in depressive symptom profile (30-item Inventory of Depressive Symptomatology (IDS)) at baseline and in response to light therapy (versus placebo), between lower and higher IR individuals, using Likelihood Ratio tests and Linear-by-linear association. IR was measured using the gold standard, a hyperinsulinemic-euglycaemic clamp.

Results: At baseline, higher IR individuals reported more symptoms of irritability (p=0.024) anhedonia (no interest in people and activities: p=0.011; absence of pleasure and enjoyment: p=0.021), fatigue (fatigue: p=0.036; physical fatigue: p=0.035) and hypersomnia (p=0.029) relative to persons with lower IR, who reported more insomnia (nightly awakening: p=0.041; early morning awakening: p=0.012). Light therapy led to an improvement across IDS symptoms in higher IR individuals, while in lower IR individuals, light therapy improved early morning awakening (p=0.005) and interest in people and activities (p=0.015), but worsened mood (feeling sad: p=0.001; feeling irritable: p=0.002; interpersonal sensitivity: p=0.014).

Conclusions: Results add to the hypothesis of an immune-metabolic subtype of depression, and suggest that IR might be a promising focus for precision medicine.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jad.2021.08.151DOI Listing
December 2021

Incident Major Depressive Disorder Predicted by Three Measures of Insulin Resistance: A Dutch Cohort Study.

Am J Psychiatry 2021 10 23;178(10):914-920. Epub 2021 Sep 23.

Department of Epidemiology and Population Health (Watson, Simard, Henderson), Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences (Watson, Nutkiewicz, Rasgon), and Department of Neurology and Neurological Sciences (Henderson), Stanford School of Medicine, Stanford, Calif.; Department of Psychiatry and Amsterdam Public Health Research Institute, Amsterdam UMC, Vrije Universiteit, Amsterdam (Lamers, Penninx); and Harold and Margaret Milliken Hatch Laboratory of Neuroendocrinology, Rockefeller University, New York (Nasca).

Objective: Major depressive disorder is the leading cause of disability worldwide. Yet, there remain significant challenges in predicting new cases of major depression and devising strategies to prevent the disorder. An important first step in this process is identifying risk factors for the incidence of major depression. There is accumulating biological evidence linking insulin resistance, another highly prevalent condition, and depressive disorders. The objectives of this study were to examine whether three surrogate measures of insulin resistance (high triglyceride-HDL [high-density lipoprotein] ratio; prediabetes, as indicated by fasting plasma glucose level; and high central adiposity, as measured by waist circumference) at the time of study enrollment were associated with an increased rate of incident major depressive disorder over a 9-year follow-up period and to assess whether the new onset of these surrogate measures during the first 2 years after study enrollment was predictive of incident major depressive disorder during the subsequent follow-up period.

Methods: The Netherlands Study of Depression and Anxiety (NESDA) is a multisite longitudinal study of the course and consequences of depressive and anxiety disorders in adults. The study population comprised 601 NESDA participants (18-65 years old) without a lifetime history of depression or anxiety disorders. The study's outcome was incident major depressive disorder, defined using DSM-IV criteria. Exposure measures included triglyceride-HDL ratio, fasting plasma glucose level, and waist circumference.

Results: Fourteen percent of the sample developed major depressive disorder during follow-up. Cox proportional hazards models indicated that higher triglyceride-HDL ratio was positively associated with an increased risk for incident major depression (hazard ratio=1.89, 95% CI=1.15, 3.11), as were higher fasting plasma glucose levels (hazard ratio=1.37, 95% CI=1.05, 1.77) and higher waist circumference (hazard ratio=1.11 95% CI=1.01, 1.21). The development of prediabetes in the 2-year period after study enrollment was positively associated with incident major depressive disorder (hazard ratio=2.66, 95% CI=1.13, 6.27). The development of high triglyceride-HDL ratio and high central adiposity (cut-point ≥100 cm) in the same period was not associated with incident major depression.

Conclusions: Three surrogate measures of insulin resistance positively predicted incident major depressive disorder in a 9-year follow-up period among adults with no history of depression or anxiety disorder. In addition, the development of prediabetes between enrollment and the 2-year study visit was positively associated with incident major depressive disorder. These findings may have utility for evaluating the risk for the development of major depression among patients with insulin resistance or metabolic pathology.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1176/appi.ajp.2021.20101479DOI Listing
October 2021

Basal and LPS-stimulated inflammatory markers and the course of anxiety symptoms.

Brain Behav Immun 2021 Nov 9;98:378-387. Epub 2021 Sep 9.

Department of Psychiatry, Leiden University Medical Center, Leiden, The Netherlands.

A cross-sectional relationship between low-grade inflammation -characterized by increased blood levels of C-reactive protein (CRP) and pro-inflammatory cytokines- and anxiety has been reported, but the potential longitudinal relationship has been less well studied. We aimed to examine whether basal and lipopolysaccharide (LPS-)induced levels of inflammatory markers are associated with anxiety symptom severity over the course of nine years. We tested the association between basal and LPS-induced inflammatory markers with anxiety symptoms (measured with the Beck's Anxiety Inventory; BAI, Fear Questionnaire; FQ and Penn's State Worry Questionnaire; PSWQ) at 5 assessment waves over a period up nine years. We used multivariate-adjusted mixed models in up to 2867 participants of the Netherlands Study of Depression and Anxiety (NESDA). At baseline, 43.6% of the participants had a current anxiety disorder, of which social phobia (18.5%) was most prevalent. Our results demonstrated that baseline inflammatory markers were significantly associated with several outcomes of anxiety at baseline over nine subsequent years. BAI subscale of somatic (arousal) symptoms of anxiety, and FQ subscale of agoraphobia demonstrated the strongest effects with standardized beta-coefficients of up to 0.14. The associations were attenuated by 25%-30% after adjusting for the presence of (comorbid) major depressive disorder (MDD), but remained statistically significant. In conclusion, we found that participants with high levels of inflammatory markers have on average high levels of anxiety consisting of physical arousal and agoraphobia, which tended to persist over a period of nine years, albeit with small effect sizes. These associations were partly driven by co-morbid depression.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.bbi.2021.09.001DOI Listing
November 2021

Investigating the impact of COVID-19 lockdown on adults with a recent history of recurrent major depressive disorder: a multi-Centre study using remote measurement technology.

BMC Psychiatry 2021 09 6;21(1):435. Epub 2021 Sep 6.

Department of Psychological Medicine, Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology and Neuroscience, King's College London, London, UK.

Background: The outbreak of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), which causes a clinical illness Covid-19, has had a major impact on mental health globally. Those diagnosed with major depressive disorder (MDD) may be negatively impacted by the global pandemic due to social isolation, feelings of loneliness or lack of access to care. This study seeks to assess the impact of the 1st lockdown - pre-, during and post - in adults with a recent history of MDD across multiple centres.

Methods: This study is a secondary analysis of an on-going cohort study, RADAR-MDD project, a multi-centre study examining the use of remote measurement technology (RMT) in monitoring MDD. Self-reported questionnaire and passive data streams were analysed from participants who had joined the project prior to 1st December 2019 and had completed Patient Health and Self-esteem Questionnaires during the pandemic (n = 252). We used mixed models for repeated measures to estimate trajectories of depressive symptoms, self-esteem, and sleep duration.

Results: In our sample of 252 participants, 48% (n = 121) had clinically relevant depressive symptoms shortly before the pandemic. For the sample as a whole, we found no evidence that depressive symptoms or self-esteem changed between pre-, during- and post-lockdown. However, we found evidence that mean sleep duration (in minutes) decreased significantly between during- and post- lockdown (- 12.16; 95% CI - 18.39 to - 5.92; p <  0.001). We also found that those experiencing clinically relevant depressive symptoms shortly before the pandemic showed a decrease in depressive symptoms, self-esteem and sleep duration between pre- and during- lockdown (interaction p = 0.047, p = 0.045 and p <  0.001, respectively) as compared to those who were not.

Conclusions: We identified changes in depressive symptoms and sleep duration over the course of lockdown, some of which varied according to whether participants were experiencing clinically relevant depressive symptoms shortly prior to the pandemic. However, the results of this study suggest that those with MDD do not experience a significant worsening in symptoms during the first months of the Covid - 19 pandemic.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s12888-021-03434-5DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8419819PMC
September 2021

Psychosocial factors and cancer incidence (PSY-CA): Protocol for individual participant data meta-analyses.

Brain Behav 2021 Oct 2;11(10):e2340. Epub 2021 Sep 2.

Julius Center for Health Sciences and Primary Care, University Medical Center Utrecht and Utrecht University, Utrecht, the Netherlands.

Objectives: Psychosocial factors have been hypothesized to increase the risk of cancer. This study aims (1) to test whether psychosocial factors (depression, anxiety, recent loss events, subjective social support, relationship status, general distress, and neuroticism) are associated with the incidence of any cancer (any, breast, lung, prostate, colorectal, smoking-related, and alcohol-related); (2) to test the interaction between psychosocial factors and factors related to cancer risk (smoking, alcohol use, weight, physical activity, sedentary behavior, sleep, age, sex, education, hormone replacement therapy, and menopausal status) with regard to the incidence of cancer; and (3) to test the mediating role of health behaviors (smoking, alcohol use, weight, physical activity, sedentary behavior, and sleep) in the relationship between psychosocial factors and the incidence of cancer.

Methods: The psychosocial factors and cancer incidence (PSY-CA) consortium was established involving experts in the field of (psycho-)oncology, methodology, and epidemiology. Using data collected in 18 cohorts (N = 617,355), a preplanned two-stage individual participant data (IPD) meta-analysis is proposed. Standardized analyses will be conducted on harmonized datasets for each cohort (stage 1), and meta-analyses will be performed on the risk estimates (stage 2).

Conclusion: PSY-CA aims to elucidate the relationship between psychosocial factors and cancer risk by addressing several shortcomings of prior meta-analyses.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/brb3.2340DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8553309PMC
October 2021

Characteristics and Predictors of Educational and Occupational Disengagement Among Outpatient Youth With Borderline Personality Disorder.

J Pers Disord 2021 Aug 24:1-13. Epub 2021 Aug 24.

Orygen and Centre for Youth Mental Health, The University of Melbourne, Australia.

This study aimed to investigate predictors of vocational disengagement (referred to as Not in Employment, Education, or Training [NEET]) in young people with borderline personality disorder (BPD). The sample comprised 112 outpatients with a BPD diagnosis, aged 15-25 years, who participated in a randomized controlled trial (ANZCTR12610000100099). The proportion of participants who were NEET (39.3%) at study entry did not improve after 18 months and NEET status frequently changed. Therefore, multinomial regression analyses were used to study three groups: Non-NEET, NEET, and Unstable NEET status. NEET status was predicted by not achieving expected age-appropriate educational milestones, greater instability in identity, and emptiness. Greater instability in interpersonal relationships and identity predicted Unstable NEET status. The findings suggest that specific vocational interventions, that also incorporate a focus on interpersonal functioning, emptiness, and identity disturbance, are needed to improve functioning in youth with BPD, especially when educational milestones are not achieved.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1521/pedi_2021_35_534DOI Listing
August 2021

Oral contraceptives, depressive and insomnia symptoms in adult women with and without depression.

Psychoneuroendocrinology 2021 Nov 12;133:105390. Epub 2021 Aug 12.

OLVG Hospital, Department of Psychiatry and Medical Psychology, Amsterdam, The Netherlands; Amsterdam UMC, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, Department of Psychiatry, Amsterdam Public Health Research Institute, Amsterdam, The Netherlands; Singapore Institute for Clinical Sciences, Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A⁎STAR), Singapore.

Background: Worldwide, oral contraceptive (OC) use is a very common form of birth control, although it has been associated with symptoms of depression and insomnia. Insomnia is a risk factor for major depressive disorder (MDD) but may also be a symptom of the disorder. Despite the large number of women who use OC, it is yet unknown whether women with previous or current diagnosis of depression are more likely to experience more severe depressive and insomnia symptoms during concurrent OC use than women without diagnosis of depression.

Aim: This study examined associations between OC use and concurrent symptoms of depression (including atypical depression) and insomnia as well as between OC and prevalences of concurrent dysthymia and MDD. Participants were adult women with and without a history of MDD or dysthymia. We hypothesized that OC use is associated with concurrent increased severity of depressive symptoms and insomnia symptoms, as well as with an increased prevalence of concurrent diagnoses of dysthymia and MDD. We also hypothesized that a history of MDD or dysthymia moderates the relationship between OC use and depressive and insomnia symptoms.

Methods: Measurements from premenopausal adult women from the Netherlands Study of Depression and Anxiety (NESDA) were grouped, based on whether participants were using OC or naturally cycling (NC). OC use, timing and regularity of the menstrual cycle were assessed with a structured interview, self-reported symptoms of depression (including atypical depression), insomnia with validated questionnaires, and MDD and dysthymia with structured diagnostic interviews.

Results: We included a total of 1301 measurements in women who reported OC use and 1913 measurements in NC women (mean age 35.6, 49.8% and 28.9% of measurements in women with a previous depression or current depression, respectively). Linear mixed models showed that overall, OC use was neither associated with more severe depressive symptoms (including atypical depressive symptoms), nor with higher prevalence of diagnoses of MDD or dysthymia. However, by disentangling the amalgamated overall effect, within-person estimates indicated increased depressive symptoms and depressive disorder prevalence during OC use, whereas between-person estimated indicated lower depressive symptoms and prevalence of depressive disorders. OC use was consistently associated with more severe concurrent insomnia symptoms, in the overall estimates as well as in the within-person and between-person estimates. Presence of current or previous MDD or dysthymia did not moderate the associations between OC use and depressive or insomnia symptoms.

Discussion: The study findings showed consistent associations between OC use and more severe insomnia symptoms, but no consistent associations between OC and depressive symptoms or diagnoses. Instead, post-hoc analyses showed that associations between OC and depression differed between within- and between person-estimates. This indicates that, although OC shows no associations on the overall level, some individuals might experience OC-associated mood symptoms. Our findings underscore the importance of accounting for individual differences in experiences during OC use. Furthermore, it raises new questions about mechanisms underlying associations between OC, depression and insomnia.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.psyneuen.2021.105390DOI Listing
November 2021

Predicting Depressive Symptom Severity Through Individuals' Nearby Bluetooth Device Count Data Collected by Mobile Phones: Preliminary Longitudinal Study.

JMIR Mhealth Uhealth 2021 07 30;9(7):e29840. Epub 2021 Jul 30.

Department of Biostatistics & Health Informatics, Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology and Neuroscience, King's College London, London, United Kingdom.

Background: Research in mental health has found associations between depression and individuals' behaviors and statuses, such as social connections and interactions, working status, mobility, and social isolation and loneliness. These behaviors and statuses can be approximated by the nearby Bluetooth device count (NBDC) detected by Bluetooth sensors in mobile phones.

Objective: This study aimed to explore the value of the NBDC data in predicting depressive symptom severity as measured via the 8-item Patient Health Questionnaire (PHQ-8).

Methods: The data used in this paper included 2886 biweekly PHQ-8 records collected from 316 participants recruited from three study sites in the Netherlands, Spain, and the United Kingdom as part of the EU Remote Assessment of Disease and Relapse-Central Nervous System (RADAR-CNS) study. From the NBDC data 2 weeks prior to each PHQ-8 score, we extracted 49 Bluetooth features, including statistical features and nonlinear features for measuring the periodicity and regularity of individuals' life rhythms. Linear mixed-effect models were used to explore associations between Bluetooth features and the PHQ-8 score. We then applied hierarchical Bayesian linear regression models to predict the PHQ-8 score from the extracted Bluetooth features.

Results: A number of significant associations were found between Bluetooth features and depressive symptom severity. Generally speaking, along with depressive symptom worsening, one or more of the following changes were found in the preceding 2 weeks of the NBDC data: (1) the amount decreased, (2) the variance decreased, (3) the periodicity (especially the circadian rhythm) decreased, and (4) the NBDC sequence became more irregular. Compared with commonly used machine learning models, the proposed hierarchical Bayesian linear regression model achieved the best prediction metrics (R=0.526) and a root mean squared error (RMSE) of 3.891. Bluetooth features can explain an extra 18.8% of the variance in the PHQ-8 score relative to the baseline model without Bluetooth features (R=0.338, RMSE=4.547).

Conclusions: Our statistical results indicate that the NBDC data have the potential to reflect changes in individuals' behaviors and statuses concurrent with the changes in the depressive state. The prediction results demonstrate that the NBDC data have a significant value in predicting depressive symptom severity. These findings may have utility for the mental health monitoring practice in real-world settings.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.2196/29840DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8367113PMC
July 2021

Association of inflammation with depression and anxiety: evidence for symptom-specificity and potential causality from UK Biobank and NESDA cohorts.

Mol Psychiatry 2021 Jun 16. Epub 2021 Jun 16.

Department of Psychiatry, University of Cambridge, Cambridge, England.

We examined whether inflammation is uniformly associated with all depressive and anxiety symptoms, and whether these associations are potentially causal. Data was from 147,478 individuals from the UK Biobank (UKB) and 2,905 from the Netherlands Study of Depression and Anxiety (NESDA). Circulating C-reactive protein (CRP) was measured in both cohorts and interleukin-6 (IL-6) in NESDA. Genetic instruments for these proteins were obtained from published GWAS and UKB. Depressive and anxiety symptoms were assessed with self-report questionnaires. In NESDA, neurovegetative (appetite, sleep, psychomotor) symptoms were disaggregated as increased vs. decreased. In joint analyses, higher CRP was associated with depressive symptoms of depressed mood (OR = 1.06, 95% CI = 1.05-1.08), altered appetite (OR = 1.25, 95%CI = 1.23-1.28), sleep problems (OR = 1.05, 95%CI = 1.04-1.06), and fatigue (OR = 1.12, 95% CI = 1.11-1.14), and with anxiety symptoms of irritability (OR = 1.06, 95% CI = 1.05-1.08) and worrying control (OR = 1.03, 95% CI = 1.02-1.04). In NESDA, higher IL-6 was additionally associated with anhedonia (OR = 1.30, 95% CI = 1.12-1.52). Higher levels of both CRP (OR = 1.27, 95% CI = 1.13-1.43) and IL-6 (OR = 1.26, 95% CI = 1.07-1.49) were associated with increased sleep. Higher CRP was associated with increased appetite (OR = 1.21, 95% CI = 1.08-1.35) while higher IL-6 with decreased appetite (OR = 1.45, 95% CI = 1.18-1.79). In Mendelian Randomisation analyses, genetically predicted higher IL-6 activity was associated with increased risk of fatigue (estimate = 0.25, SE = 0.08) and sleep problems (estimate = 0.19, SE = 0.07). Inflammation was associated with core depressive symptoms of low mood and anhedonia and somatic/neurovegetative symptoms of fatigue, altered sleep and appetite changes. Less consistent associations were found for anxiety. The IL-6/IL-6R pathway could be causally linked to depression. Experimental studies are required to further evaluate causality, mechanisms, and usefulness of immunotherapies for depressive symptoms.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41380-021-01188-wDOI Listing
June 2021

Relationship Between Major Depression Symptom Severity and Sleep Collected Using a Wristband Wearable Device: Multicenter Longitudinal Observational Study.

JMIR Mhealth Uhealth 2021 04 12;9(4):e24604. Epub 2021 Apr 12.

see Acknowledgments, .

Background: Sleep problems tend to vary according to the course of the disorder in individuals with mental health problems. Research in mental health has associated sleep pathologies with depression. However, the gold standard for sleep assessment, polysomnography (PSG), is not suitable for long-term, continuous monitoring of daily sleep, and methods such as sleep diaries rely on subjective recall, which is qualitative and inaccurate. Wearable devices, on the other hand, provide a low-cost and convenient means to monitor sleep in home settings.

Objective: The main aim of this study was to devise and extract sleep features from data collected using a wearable device and analyze their associations with depressive symptom severity and sleep quality as measured by the self-assessed Patient Health Questionnaire 8-item (PHQ-8).

Methods: Daily sleep data were collected passively by Fitbit wristband devices, and depressive symptom severity was self-reported every 2 weeks by the PHQ-8. The data used in this paper included 2812 PHQ-8 records from 368 participants recruited from 3 study sites in the Netherlands, Spain, and the United Kingdom. We extracted 18 sleep features from Fitbit data that describe participant sleep in the following 5 aspects: sleep architecture, sleep stability, sleep quality, insomnia, and hypersomnia. Linear mixed regression models were used to explore associations between sleep features and depressive symptom severity. The z score was used to evaluate the significance of the coefficient of each feature.

Results: We tested our models on the entire dataset and separately on the data of 3 different study sites. We identified 14 sleep features that were significantly (P<.05) associated with the PHQ-8 score on the entire dataset, among them awake time percentage (z=5.45, P<.001), awakening times (z=5.53, P<.001), insomnia (z=4.55, P<.001), mean sleep offset time (z=6.19, P<.001), and hypersomnia (z=5.30, P<.001) were the top 5 features ranked by z score statistics. Associations between sleep features and PHQ-8 scores varied across different sites, possibly due to differences in the populations. We observed that many of our findings were consistent with previous studies, which used other measurements to assess sleep, such as PSG and sleep questionnaires.

Conclusions: We demonstrated that several derived sleep features extracted from consumer wearable devices show potential for the remote measurement of sleep as biomarkers of depression in real-world settings. These findings may provide the basis for the development of clinical tools to passively monitor disease state and trajectory, with minimal burden on the participant.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.2196/24604DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8076992PMC
April 2021

Effects of dietary interventions on depressive symptom profiles: results from the MooDFOOD depression prevention study.

Psychol Med 2021 Apr 7:1-10. Epub 2021 Apr 7.

Department of Psychiatry, Amsterdam UMC, Vrije Universiteit, Amsterdam Public Health Research Institute and Amsterdam Neuroscience, Amsterdam, The Netherlands.

Background: Dietary interventions did not prevent depression onset nor reduced depressive symptoms in a large multi-center randomized controlled depression prevention study (MooDFOOD) involving overweight adults with subsyndromal depressive symptoms. We conducted follow-up analyses to investigate whether dietary interventions differ in their effects on depressive symptom profiles (mood/cognition; somatic; atypical, energy-related).

Methods: Baseline, 3-, 6-, and 12-month follow-up data from MooDFOOD were used (n = 933). Participants received (1) placebo supplements, (2) food-related behavioral activation (F-BA) therapy with placebo supplements, (3) multi-nutrient supplements (omega-3 fatty acids and a multi-vitamin), or (4) F-BA therapy with multi-nutrient supplements. Depressive symptom profiles were based on the Inventory of Depressive Symptomatology.

Results: F-BA therapy was significantly associated with decreased severity of the somatic (B = -0.03, p = 0.014, d = -0.10) and energy-related (B = -0.08, p = 0.001, d = -0.13), but not with the mood/cognition symptom profile, whereas multi-nutrient supplementation was significantly associated with increased severity of the mood/cognition (B = 0.05, p = 0.022, d = 0.09) and the energy-related (B = 0.07, p = 0.002, d = 0.12) but not with the somatic symptom profile.

Conclusions: Differentiating depressive symptom profiles indicated that food-related behavioral interventions are most beneficial to alleviate somatic symptoms and symptoms of the atypical, energy-related profile linked to an immuno-metabolic form of depression, although effect sizes were small. Multi-nutrient supplements are not indicated to reduce depressive symptom profiles. These findings show that attention to clinical heterogeneity in depression is of importance when studying dietary interventions.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1017/S0033291721000337DOI Listing
April 2021

Investigating Data-driven Biological Subtypes of Psychiatric Disorders Using Specification-Curve Analysis - ERRATUM.

Psychol Med 2021 Feb 26. Epub 2021 Feb 26.

Department of Psychiatry, University of Groningen, University Medical Center Groningen, Interdisciplinary Center Psychopathology and Emotion regulation (ICPE), Groningen, The Netherlands.

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1017/S0033291721000660DOI Listing
February 2021

Sociodemographic, Health and Lifestyle, Sampling, and Mental Health Determinants of 24-Hour Motor Activity Patterns: Observational Study.

J Med Internet Res 2021 02 17;23(2):e20700. Epub 2021 Feb 17.

Amsterdam Public Health Research Institute, Department of Psychiatry, Amsterdam UMC, Vrije Universiteit, Amsterdam, Netherlands.

Background: Analyzing actigraphy data using standard circadian parametric models and aggregated nonparametric indices may obscure temporal information that may be a hallmark of the circadian impairment in psychiatric disorders. Functional data analysis (FDA) may overcome such limitations by fully exploiting the richness of actigraphy data and revealing important relationships with mental health outcomes. To our knowledge, no studies have extensively used FDA to study the relationship between sociodemographic, health and lifestyle, sampling, and psychiatric clinical characteristics and daily motor activity patterns assessed with actigraphy in a sample of individuals with and without depression/anxiety.

Objective: We aimed to study the association between daily motor activity patterns assessed via actigraphy and (1) sociodemographic, health and lifestyle, and sampling factors, and (2) psychiatric clinical characteristics (ie, presence and severity of depression/anxiety disorders).

Methods: We obtained 14-day continuous actigraphy data from 359 participants from the Netherlands Study of Depression and Anxiety with current (n=93), remitted (n=176), or no (n=90) depression/anxiety diagnosis, based on the criteria of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, fourth edition. Associations between patterns of daily motor activity, quantified via functional principal component analysis (fPCA), and sociodemographic, health and lifestyle, sampling, and psychiatric clinical characteristics were assessed using generalized estimating equation regressions. For exploratory purposes, function-on-scalar regression (FoSR) was applied to quantify the time-varying association of sociodemographic, health and lifestyle, sampling, and psychiatric clinical characteristics on daily motor activity.

Results: Four components of daily activity patterns captured 77.4% of the variability in the data: overall daily activity level (fPCA1, 34.3% variability), early versus late morning activity (fPCA2, 16.5% variability), biphasic versus monophasic activity (fPCA3, 14.8% variability), and early versus late biphasic activity (fPCA4, 11.8% variability). A low overall daily activity level was associated with a number of sociodemographic, health and lifestyle, and psychopathology variables: older age (P<.001), higher education level (P=.005), higher BMI (P=.009), greater number of chronic diseases (P=.02), greater number of cigarettes smoked per day (P=.02), current depressive and/or anxiety disorders (P=.05), and greater severity of depressive symptoms (P<.001). A high overall daily activity level was associated with work/school days (P=.02) and summer (reference: winter; P=.03). Earlier morning activity was associated with older age (P=.02), having a partner (P=.009), work/school days (P<.001), and autumn and spring (reference: winter; P=.02 and P<.001, respectively). Monophasic activity was associated with older age (P=.005). Biphasic activity was associated with work/school days (P<.001) and summer (reference: winter; P<.001). Earlier biphasic activity was associated with older age (P=.005), work/school days (P<.001), and spring and summer (reference: winter; P<.001 and P=.005, respectively). In FoSR analyses, age, work/school days, and season were the main determinants having a time-varying association with daily motor activity (all P<.05).

Conclusions: Features of daily motor activity extracted with fPCA reflect commonly studied factors such as the intensity of daily activity and preference for morningness/eveningness. The presence and severity of depression/anxiety disorders were found to be associated mainly with a lower overall activity pattern but not with the time of the activity. Age, work/school days, and season were the variables most strongly associated with patterns and time of activity, and thus future epidemiological studies on motor activity in depression/anxiety should take these variables into account.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.2196/20700DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7929740PMC
February 2021

The long-lasting impact of childhood trauma on adult chronic physical disorders.

J Psychiatr Res 2021 04 27;136:87-94. Epub 2021 Jan 27.

GGZinGeest, Oldenaller 1, 1081 HJ, Amsterdam, the Netherlands; Department of Psychiatry and Amsterdam Public Health Research Institute, Amsterdam UMC, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, de Boelelaan 1105, 1081, HV, the Netherlands. Electronic address:

Background: It is unclear if childhood trauma (CT) is an independent risk factor of adult chronic physical disorders or whether its impact is (also) due to underlying poorer mental health.

Methods: Data were obtained from baseline measurements among 13,489 respondents of the Netherlands Mental Health Survey and Incidence Study-1 and -2, cohort studies of the Dutch general population aged 18-64 years. We used a childhood trauma questionnaire measuring emotional, psychological, physical or sexual trauma before the age of 16. Lifetime mood, anxiety and substance use disorders were assessed with the Composite International Diagnostic Interview version 1.1 and 3.0. A standard self-report checklist was used to assess a broad range of chronic physical disorders treated by a medical doctor in the previous 12 months.

Results: Respondents with a history of CT (N = 4054) suffered significantly more often from digestive (OR: 1.89-2.95), musculoskeletal (OR: 1.21-1.75) and respiratory disorders (OR: 1.39-1.91) and migraine (OR: 1.42-1.66). We found indirect associations between CT and digestive, musculoskeletal and respiratory disorders through lifetime mood (54%, 52% and 48% respectively), anxiety (44%, 55% and 44% respectively) and substance use disorders (33%, 23% and 38% respectively). Mood (69%) and anxiety disorders (67%) also impacted the relationship with migraine.

Conclusions: CT predicts the development of adult physical disorders, even after controlling for sociodemographic and lifestyle factors. This association is substantially influenced by mental health disorders. Treatment programs for CT should include interventions aimed at enhancing both mental and physical health.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jpsychires.2021.01.031DOI Listing
April 2021

The day-to-day bidirectional longitudinal association between objective and self-reported sleep and affect: An ambulatory assessment study.

J Affect Disord 2021 03 27;283:165-171. Epub 2021 Jan 27.

Amsterdam UMC, Vrije Universiteit, Department of Psychiatry, Amsterdam Public Health Research Institute, The Netherlands.

Background: Ambulatory assessments offer opportunities to evaluate daily dynamics of sleep and momentary affect using mobile technologies. This study examines day-to-day bidirectional associations between sleep and affect using mobile monitoring, and evaluates whether these associations differ between people without and with current or remitted depression/anxiety.

Methods: Two-week ecological momentary assessment (EMA) and actigraphy data of 359 participants with current (n = 93), remitted (n = 176) or no (n = 90) CIDI depression/anxiety diagnoses were obtained from the Netherlands Study of Depression and Anxiety. Objective sleep duration (SD) and efficiency were obtained from actigraphy data. Self-reported SD, sleep quality (SQ), positive affect (PA) and negative affect (NA) were assessed by electronic diaries through EMA.

Results: A bidirectional longitudinal association was found between self-reported SQ and affect, while no association was found for self-reported SD and objective SD and efficiency. Better SQ predicted affect the same day (higher PA: b = 0.035, p < 0.001; lower NA: b = -0.022, p < 0.001), while lower NA on the preceding day predicted better SQ (b = -0.102, p = 0.001). The presence of current depression/anxiety disorders moderated the association between better SQ and subsequent lower NA; it was stronger for patients compared to controls (p = 0.003).

Limitations: Observational study design can only point to areas of interest for interventions.

Conclusions: This 2-week ambulatory monitoring study shows that, especially among depression/anxiety patients, better self-reported SQ predicts higher PA and lower NA the same day, while lower NA predicts better self-reported SQ. The value of mobile technologies to monitor and potentially intervene in patients to improve their affect should be explored.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jad.2021.01.052DOI Listing
March 2021

An integrated approach to understand biological stress system dysregulation across depressive and anxiety disorders.

J Affect Disord 2021 03 27;283:139-146. Epub 2021 Jan 27.

Department of Psychiatry (GGZ inGeest), Amsterdam UMC (location VUmc), Vrije University, Amsterdam Public Health and Amsterdam Neuroscience Research Institutes, Amsterdam, the Netherlands.

Background: Affective disorders involve dysregulation of major biological stress systems (hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA)-axis, immune system, autonomic nervous system (ANS)). Suchdysregulationshave rarely beensimultaneously examined across different stress systems.

Methods: In the Netherlands Study of Depression and Anxiety (n=2789), we investigated whether current or remitted depressive and/or anxiety disorders (based on the CIDI semi-structured interview), including specific symptom profiles, were associated with separate markers and cumulative indexes of the HPA-axis (cortisol awakening response, evening cortisol, dexamethasone suppression test cortisol), immune system (C-reactive protein, interleukin-6, tumor necrosis factor-α), and ANS (heart rate, respiratory sinus arrhythmia, pre-ejection period).

Results: Depressive andanxiety disorderswere significantlyassociated with changes in three biological stress systemsincluding HPA-axis hyperactivity, increased inflammatory activity, and a higher ANS tone, particularly for integrative and cumulative indexes of these stress systems (pFDR <.05) vs. controls. The strongest associations were seen with current disorders andcumulative indexes of the HPA-axis (β=.124, pFDR=.001), the immune system (β =.057, pFDR=.032), and total cumulative index across stress systems (β=.102, pFDR=.004). Atypical, energy-related depression severity was linked to immune system markers (pFDR<0.001), melancholic depression severity to HPA-axis markers (pFDR=.032), and anxiety arousal severity to both HPA-axis and immune system markers (pFDR<0.05). Findings were partially explained by poorer lifestyle, more chronic diseases,or (especially for ANS-function) antidepressant use.

Limitations: Cross-sectional analyses limit examination of temporal associations.

Conclusion: Patients withdepressive and anxiety disorders showed consistent dysregulation across biological stress systems, particularly for current episodes.To understand stress system functionality in affective disorders, an integrated approach capturing cumulative stress indices within and across biological stress systems is important.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jad.2021.01.051DOI Listing
March 2021

Obesity and atypical depression symptoms: findings from Mendelian randomization in two European cohorts.

Transl Psychiatry 2021 02 4;11(1):96. Epub 2021 Feb 4.

Institute of Primary Care and Public Health (Unisante), University of Lausanne, Lausanne, Switzerland.

Studies considering the causal role of body mass index (BMI) for the predisposition of major depressive disorder (MDD) based on a Mendelian Randomization (MR) approach have shown contradictory results. These inconsistent findings may be attributable to the heterogeneity of MDD; in fact, several studies have documented associations between BMI and mainly the atypical subtype of MDD. Using a MR approach, we investigated the potential causal role of obesity in both the atypical subtype and its five specific symptoms assessed according to the Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM), in two large European cohorts, CoLaus|PsyCoLaus (n = 3350, 1461 cases and 1889 controls) and NESDA|NTR (n = 4139, 1182 cases and 2957 controls). We first tested general obesity measured by BMI and then the body fat distribution measured by waist-to-hip ratio (WHR). Results suggested that BMI is potentially causally related to the symptom increase in appetite, for which inverse variance weighted, simple median and weighted median MR regression estimated slopes were 0.68 (SE = 0.23, p = 0.004), 0.77 (SE = 0.37, p = 0.036), and 1.11 (SE = 0.39, p = 0.004). No causal effect of BMI or WHR was found on the risk of the atypical subtype or for any of the other atypical symptoms. Our findings show that higher obesity is likely causal for the specific symptom of increase in appetite in depressed participants and reiterate the need to study depression at the granular level of its symptoms to further elucidate potential causal relationships and gain additional insight into its biological underpinnings.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41398-021-01236-7DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7862438PMC
February 2021

Identifying causative mechanisms linking early-life stress to psycho-cardio-metabolic multi-morbidity: The EarlyCause project.

PLoS One 2021 21;16(1):e0245475. Epub 2021 Jan 21.

Empirica Communication and Technology Research, Bonn, Germany.

Introduction: Depression, cardiovascular diseases and diabetes are among the major non-communicable diseases, leading to significant disability and mortality worldwide. These diseases may share environmental and genetic determinants associated with multimorbid patterns. Stressful early-life events are among the primary factors associated with the development of mental and physical diseases. However, possible causative mechanisms linking early life stress (ELS) with psycho-cardio-metabolic (PCM) multi-morbidity are not well understood. This prevents a full understanding of causal pathways towards the shared risk of these diseases and the development of coordinated preventive and therapeutic interventions.

Methods And Analysis: This paper describes the study protocol for EarlyCause, a large-scale and inter-disciplinary research project funded by the European Union's Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme. The project takes advantage of human longitudinal birth cohort data, animal studies and cellular models to test the hypothesis of shared mechanisms and molecular pathways by which ELS shapes an individual's physical and mental health in adulthood. The study will research in detail how ELS converts into biological signals embedded simultaneously or sequentially in the brain, the cardiovascular and metabolic systems. The research will mainly focus on four biological processes including possible alterations of the epigenome, neuroendocrine system, inflammatome, and the gut microbiome. Life-course models will integrate the role of modifying factors as sex, socioeconomics, and lifestyle with the goal to better identify groups at risk as well as inform promising strategies to reverse the possible mechanisms and/or reduce the impact of ELS on multi-morbidity development in high-risk individuals. These strategies will help better manage the impact of multi-morbidity on human health and the associated risk.
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http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0245475PLOS
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7819604PMC
June 2021

Dissecting Depression Biological and Clinical Heterogeneity-The Importance of Symptom Assessment Resolution.

JAMA Psychiatry 2021 Mar;78(3):341

Department of Psychiatry, Amsterdam Public Health and Amsterdam Neuroscience, Amsterdam UMC, Vrije Universiteit/GGZ inGeest, Amsterdam, the Netherlands.

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1001/jamapsychiatry.2020.4373DOI Listing
March 2021

The role of depressive symptoms and symptom dimensions in actigraphy-assessed sleep, circadian rhythm, and physical activity.

Psychol Med 2021 Jan 12:1-7. Epub 2021 Jan 12.

Department of Psychiatry, Amsterdam UMC, Vrije Universiteit, Amsterdam Public Health research institute, Amsterdam, The Netherlands.

Background: Considering the heterogeneity of depression, distinct depressive symptom dimensions may be differentially associated with more objective actigraphy-based estimates of physical activity (PA), sleep and circadian rhythm (CR). We examined the association between PA, sleep, and CR assessed with actigraphy and symptom dimensions (i.e. mood/cognition, somatic/vegetative, sleep).

Methods: Fourteen-day actigraphy data of 359 participants were obtained from the Netherlands Study of Depression and Anxiety. PA, sleep, and CR estimates included gross motor activity (GMA), sleep duration (SD), sleep efficiency (SE), relative amplitude between daytime and night-time activity (RA) and sleep midpoint. The 30-item Inventory of Depressive Symptomatology was used to assess depressive symptoms, which were categorised in three depression dimensions: mood/cognition, somatic/vegetative, and sleep.

Results: GMA and RA were negatively associated with higher score on all three symptom dimensions: mood/cognition (GMA: β = -0.155, p < 0.001; RA: β = -0.116, p = 0.002), somatic/vegetative (GMA: β = -0.165, p < 0.001; RA: β = -0.133, p < 0.001), sleep (GMA: β = -0.169, p < 0.001; RA: β = -0.190, p < 0.001). The association with sleep was more pronounced for two depression dimensions: longer SD was linked to somatic/vegetative (β = 0.115, p = 0.015) dimension and lower SE was linked to sleep (β = -0.101, p = 0.011) dimension.

Conclusion: As three symptom dimensions were associated with actigraphy-based low PA and dampened CR, these seem to be general indicators of depression. Sleep disturbances appeared more linked to the somatic/vegetative and sleep dimensions; the effectiveness of sleep interventions in patients reporting somatic/vegetative symptoms may be explored, as well as the potential of actigraphy to monitor treatment response to such interventions.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1017/S0033291720004870DOI Listing
January 2021

Linking atypical depression and insulin resistance-related disorders via low-grade chronic inflammation: Integrating the phenotypic, molecular and neuroanatomical dimensions.

Brain Behav Immun 2021 03 23;93:335-352. Epub 2020 Dec 23.

Department of Psychiatry and Psychotherapy, University Tuebingen, Calwerstraße 14, 72076 Tuebingen, Germany; Department of Psychiatry and Psychotherapy, Jena University Hospital, Philosophenweg 3, 07743 Jena, Germany; Clinical Affective Neuroimaging Laboratory (CANLAB), Leipziger Str. 44, Building 65, 39120 Magdeburg, Germany; Leibniz Institute for Neurobiology, Brenneckestr. 6, 39118 Magdeburg, Germany. Electronic address:

Insulin resistance (IR) and related disorders, such as T2DM, increase the risk of major depressive disorder (MDD) and vice versa. Current evidence indicates that psychological stress and overeating can induce chronic low-grade inflammation that can interfere with glutamate metabolism in MDD as well as insulin signaling, particularly in the atypical subtype. Here we first review the interactive role of inflammatory processes in the development of MDD, IR and related metabolic disorders. Next, we describe the role of the anterior cingulate cortex in the pathophysiology of MDD and IR-related disorders. Furthermore, we outline how specific clinical features of atypical depression, such as hyperphagia, are more associated with inflammation and IR-related disorders. Finally, we examine the regional specificity of the effects of inflammation on the brain that show an overlap with the functional and morphometric brain patterns activated in MDD and IR-related disorders.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.bbi.2020.12.020DOI Listing
March 2021

Screening for Depression in Daily Life: Development and External Validation of a Prediction Model Based on Actigraphy and Experience Sampling Method.

J Med Internet Res 2020 12 1;22(12):e22634. Epub 2020 Dec 1.

Interdisciplinary Center for Psychopathology and Emotion regulation, Department of Developmental Psychology, Faculty of Behavioural and Social Sciences, University of Groningen, Groningen, Netherlands.

Background: In many countries, depressed individuals often first visit primary care settings for consultation, but a considerable number of clinically depressed patients remain unidentified. Introducing additional screening tools may facilitate the diagnostic process.

Objective: This study aimed to examine whether experience sampling method (ESM)-based measures of depressive affect and behaviors can discriminate depressed from nondepressed individuals. In addition, the added value of actigraphy-based measures was examined.

Methods: We used data from 2 samples to develop and validate prediction models. The development data set included 14 days of ESM and continuous actigraphy of currently depressed (n=43) and nondepressed individuals (n=82). The validation data set included 30 days of ESM and continuous actigraphy of currently depressed (n=27) and nondepressed individuals (n=27). Backward stepwise logistic regression analysis was applied to build the prediction models. Performance of the models was assessed with goodness-of-fit indices, calibration curves, and discriminative ability (area under the receiver operating characteristic curve [AUC]).

Results: In the development data set, the discriminative ability was good for the actigraphy model (AUC=0.790) and excellent for both the ESM (AUC=0.991) and the combined-domains model (AUC=0.993). In the validation data set, the discriminative ability was reasonable for the actigraphy model (AUC=0.648) and excellent for both the ESM (AUC=0.891) and the combined-domains model (AUC=0.892).

Conclusions: ESM is a good diagnostic predictor and is easy to calculate, and it therefore holds promise for implementation in clinical practice. Actigraphy shows no added value to ESM as a diagnostic predictor but might still be useful when ESM use is restricted.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.2196/22634DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7894744PMC
December 2020

Cortical thickness and resting-state cardiac function across the lifespan: A cross-sectional pooled mega-analysis.

Psychophysiology 2021 07 10;58(7):e13688. Epub 2020 Oct 10.

Norwegian Centre for Mental Disorders Research (NORMENT), Institute of Clinical Medicine, University of Oslo, Oslo, Norway.

Understanding the association between autonomic nervous system [ANS] function and brain morphology across the lifespan provides important insights into neurovisceral mechanisms underlying health and disease. Resting-state ANS activity, indexed by measures of heart rate [HR] and its variability [HRV] has been associated with brain morphology, particularly cortical thickness [CT]. While findings have been mixed regarding the anatomical distribution and direction of the associations, these inconsistencies may be due to sex and age differences in HR/HRV and CT. Previous studies have been limited by small sample sizes, which impede the assessment of sex differences and aging effects on the association between ANS function and CT. To overcome these limitations, 20 groups worldwide contributed data collected under similar protocols of CT assessment and HR/HRV recording to be pooled in a mega-analysis (N = 1,218 (50.5% female), mean age 36.7 years (range: 12-87)). Findings suggest a decline in HRV as well as CT with increasing age. CT, particularly in the orbitofrontal cortex, explained additional variance in HRV, beyond the effects of aging. This pattern of results may suggest that the decline in HRV with increasing age is related to a decline in orbitofrontal CT. These effects were independent of sex and specific to HRV; with no significant association between CT and HR. Greater CT across the adult lifespan may be vital for the maintenance of healthy cardiac regulation via the ANS-or greater cardiac vagal activity as indirectly reflected in HRV may slow brain atrophy. Findings reveal an important association between CT and cardiac parasympathetic activity with implications for healthy aging and longevity that should be studied further in longitudinal research.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/psyp.13688DOI Listing
July 2021

Using Smartphones and Wearable Devices to Monitor Behavioral Changes During COVID-19.

J Med Internet Res 2020 09 25;22(9):e19992. Epub 2020 Sep 25.

The RADAR-CNS Consortium, London, United Kingdom.

Background: In the absence of a vaccine or effective treatment for COVID-19, countries have adopted nonpharmaceutical interventions (NPIs) such as social distancing and full lockdown. An objective and quantitative means of passively monitoring the impact and response of these interventions at a local level is needed.

Objective: We aim to explore the utility of the recently developed open-source mobile health platform Remote Assessment of Disease and Relapse (RADAR)-base as a toolbox to rapidly test the effect and response to NPIs intended to limit the spread of COVID-19.

Methods: We analyzed data extracted from smartphone and wearable devices, and managed by the RADAR-base from 1062 participants recruited in Italy, Spain, Denmark, the United Kingdom, and the Netherlands. We derived nine features on a daily basis including time spent at home, maximum distance travelled from home, the maximum number of Bluetooth-enabled nearby devices (as a proxy for physical distancing), step count, average heart rate, sleep duration, bedtime, phone unlock duration, and social app use duration. We performed Kruskal-Wallis tests followed by post hoc Dunn tests to assess differences in these features among baseline, prelockdown, and during lockdown periods. We also studied behavioral differences by age, gender, BMI, and educational background.

Results: We were able to quantify expected changes in time spent at home, distance travelled, and the number of nearby Bluetooth-enabled devices between prelockdown and during lockdown periods (P<.001 for all five countries). We saw reduced sociality as measured through mobility features and increased virtual sociality through phone use. People were more active on their phones (P<.001 for Italy, Spain, and the United Kingdom), spending more time using social media apps (P<.001 for Italy, Spain, the United Kingdom, and the Netherlands), particularly around major news events. Furthermore, participants had a lower heart rate (P<.001 for Italy and Spain; P=.02 for Denmark), went to bed later (P<.001 for Italy, Spain, the United Kingdom, and the Netherlands), and slept more (P<.001 for Italy, Spain, and the United Kingdom). We also found that young people had longer homestay than older people during the lockdown and fewer daily steps. Although there was no significant difference between the high and low BMI groups in time spent at home, the low BMI group walked more.

Conclusions: RADAR-base, a freely deployable data collection platform leveraging data from wearables and mobile technologies, can be used to rapidly quantify and provide a holistic view of behavioral changes in response to public health interventions as a result of infectious outbreaks such as COVID-19. RADAR-base may be a viable approach to implementing an early warning system for passively assessing the local compliance to interventions in epidemics and pandemics, and could help countries ease out of lockdown.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.2196/19992DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7527031PMC
September 2020

The role of borderline personality disorder symptoms on absenteeism & work performance in the Netherlands Study of Depression and Anxiety (NESDA).

BMC Psychiatry 2020 08 24;20(1):414. Epub 2020 Aug 24.

Amsterdam UMC, Vrije Universiteit, Psychiatry, Amsterdam Public Health research institute, De Boelelaan 1117, Amsterdam, The Netherlands & GGZ inGeest Specialized Mental Health Care, Oldenaller 1, Amsterdam, The Netherlands.

Background: Symptoms of borderline personality disorder (BPD) were previously found to be associated with decreased work performance, even after controlling for depressive and anxiety disorders. Furthermore, co-occurrence of BPD and affective disorders is common. Therefore, we examined the effect of BPD symptoms on occupational functioning in workers with affective disorders.

Methods: Healthy workers (n = 287), workers with current depression/anxiety only (n = 195), workers with BPD symptoms only (n = 54), and workers with both depression/anxiety and BPD symptoms (n = 103) were selected from the Netherlands Study of Depression and Anxiety (NESDA). Both a categorical and dimensional approach were used to cross-sectionally study the effect of BPD symptoms on work performance and absenteeism.

Results: Compared to healthy controls, all symptomatic groups had impaired occupational functioning. Workers with current depression/anxiety had higher long-term absenteeism (OR = 3.59; 95%CI:1.83-7.02) and impaired work performance (OR = 7.81; 95%CI:4.44-13.73), workers with BPD symptoms only had higher impaired work performance (OR = 6.02 95%CI:2.76-13.09), and workers with both depression/anxiety and BPD symptoms had higher long-term absenteeism (OR = 3.66 95%CI:1.69-7.91) and impaired work performance (OR = 10.41 95%CI:5.38-20.15). No difference was found between the (symptomatic) groups. In the dimensional analysis, all associations between BPD symptoms and occupational measures disappeared when depressive symptoms were added. Depressive and BPD symptoms were highly correlated (r = .67).

Conclusions: Our findings confirm that both affective disorders and BPD symptoms are associated with occupational dysfunction. The effect of BPD symptoms however, seems mediated by depressive symptoms. This would suggest that focusing on affective symptoms in occupational health may be effective to improve occupational functioning in persons with BPD.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s12888-020-02815-6DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7444043PMC
August 2020
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