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  • Street triage services in England: service models, national provision and the opinions of police.

    16 November 2018

    Aims and methodStreet triage services are increasingly common and part of standard responses to mental health crises in the community, but little is understood about them. We conducted a national survey of mental health trusts to gather detailed information regarding street triage services alongside a survey of Thames Valley police officers to ascertain their views and experiences. RESULTS: Triage services are available in most areas of the country and are growing in scope. There is wide variation in levels of funding and modes of operation, including hours covered. Police officers from our survey overwhelmingly support such services and would like to see them expanded.Clinical implicationsMental health crises now form a core part of policing and there are compelling reasons for the support of specialist services. Recent changes to the law have heightened this need, with a requirement for specialist input before a Section 136 is enacted. Those who have experienced triage services report it as less stigmatising and traumatic than a traditional approach, but there remains little evidence on which to base decisions.Declaration of interestNone.

  • Internalizing symptoms and dating violence perpetration in adolescence.

    3 November 2018

    BACKGROUND: Increasing evidence suggests an association between internalizing symptoms and violence against others. It remains unknown whether this link exists in the context of romantic relationships. In the current study, we tested whether anxiety and depression were associated over time with adolescent dating violence perpetration. METHODS: The sample included 238 Canadian adolescents (42% boys). Using a longitudinal design, their anxiety, depressive symptoms, and dating violence perpetration were annually assessed from age 14 to 15 years. RESULTS: Cross-lagged analyses revealed effects from anxiety and depressive symptoms to dating violence one year later (β = 0.27, p < .001; and β = 0.14, p = .04, respectively). No reversed cross-lagged paths were found from dating violence to subsequent anxiety or depression. CONCLUSIONS: Our findings underscore the predictive value of internalizing symptoms on dating violence perpetration. Reducing internalizing symptoms and improving coping strategies are important targets for the prevention of dating violence.

  • Group-Personalized Regression Models for Predicting Mental Health Scores From Objective Mobile Phone Data Streams: Observational Study.

    5 November 2018

    BACKGROUND: Objective behavioral markers of mental illness, often recorded through smartphones or wearable devices, have the potential to transform how mental health services are delivered and to help users monitor their own health. Linking objective markers to illness is commonly performed using population-level models, which assume that everyone is the same. The reality is that there are large levels of natural interindividual variability, both in terms of response to illness and in usual behavioral patterns, as well as intraindividual variability that these models do not consider. OBJECTIVE: The objective of this study was to demonstrate the utility of splitting the population into subsets of individuals that exhibit similar relationships between their objective markers and their mental states. Using these subsets, "group-personalized" models can be built for individuals based on other individuals to whom they are most similar. METHODS: We collected geolocation data from 59 participants who were part of the Automated Monitoring of Symptom Severity study at the University of Oxford. This was an observational data collection study. Participants were diagnosed with bipolar disorder (n=20); borderline personality disorder (n=17); or were healthy controls (n=22). Geolocation data were collected using a custom Android app installed on participants' smartphones, and participants weekly reported their symptoms of depression using the 16-item quick inventory of depressive symptomatology questionnaire. Population-level models were built to estimate levels of depression using features derived from the geolocation data recorded from participants, and it was hypothesized that results could be improved by splitting individuals into subgroups with similar relationships between their behavioral features and depressive symptoms. We developed a new model using a Dirichlet process prior for splitting individuals into groups, with a Bayesian Lasso model in each group to link behavioral features with mental illness. The result is a model for each individual that incorporates information from other similar individuals to augment the limited training data available. RESULTS: The new group-personalized regression model showed a significant improvement over population-level models in predicting mental health severity (P<.001). Analysis of subgroups showed that different groups were characterized by different features derived from raw geolocation data. CONCLUSIONS: This study demonstrates the importance of handling interindividual variability when developing models of mental illness. Population-level models do not capture nuances in how different individuals respond to illness, and the group-personalized model demonstrates a potential way to overcome these limitations when estimating mental state from objective behavioral features.

  • Functional brain imaging and connectivity in dementia

    25 February 2019

    © 2017 by Taylor & Francis Group, LLC. Although several dierent image modalities will be described, neuroimaging studies of brain function in dementia largely fall into two categories: (1) the study of resting blood ow and (2) measurement of brain changes due to a specic task. is chapter starts with a brief description of methods of emission tomography, functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) and diusion tensor imaging (DTI) before describing applications in patients.

  • Neuroscience: Intracranial Recordings of Value.

    15 November 2018

    The role of orbitofrontal cortex in value-based choice is well-established from animal research, but there are challenges in relating neurophysiological recordings from animals to equivalent data from humans: a new study bridges this gap.

  • Effect of Digital Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Insomnia on Health, Psychological Well-being, and Sleep-Related Quality of Life: A Randomized Clinical Trial.

    27 November 2018

    Importance: Digital cognitive behavioral therapy (dCBT) is a scalable and effective intervention for treating insomnia. Most people with insomnia, however, seek help because of the daytime consequences of poor sleep, which adversely affects quality of life. Objectives: To investigate the effect of dCBT for insomnia on functional health, psychological well-being, and sleep-related quality of life and to determine whether a reduction in insomnia symptoms was a mediating factor. Design, Setting, and Participants: This online, 2-arm, parallel-group randomized trial comparing dCBT for insomnia with sleep hygiene education (SHE) evaluated 1711 participants with self-reported symptoms of insomnia. Participants were recruited between December 1, 2015, and December 1, 2016, and dCBT was delivered using web and/or mobile channels plus treatment as usual; SHE comprised a website and a downloadable booklet plus treatment as usual. Online assessments took place at 0 (baseline), 4 (midtreatment), 8 (posttreatment), and 24 (follow-up) weeks. Programs were completed within 12 weeks after inclusion. Main Outcomes and Measures: Primary outcomes were scores on self-reported measures of functional health (Patient-Reported Outcomes Measurement Information System: Global Health Scale; range, 10-50; higher scores indicate better health); psychological well-being (Warwick-Edinburgh Mental Well-being Scale; range, 14-70; higher scores indicate greater well-being); and sleep-related quality of life (Glasgow Sleep Impact Index; range, 1-100; higher scores indicate greater impairment). Secondary outcomes comprised mood, fatigue, sleepiness, cognitive failures, work productivity, and relationship satisfaction. Insomnia was assessed with the Sleep Condition Indicator (range: 0-32; higher scores indicate better sleep). Results: Of the 1711 participants included in the intention-to-treat analysis, 1329 (77.7%) were female, mean (SD) age was 48.0 (13.8) years, and 1558 (91.1%) were white. Use of dCBT was associated with a small improvement in functional health compared with SHE (adjusted difference [95% CI] at week 4, 0.90 [0.40-1.40]; week 8, 1.76 [1.24-2.28]; week 24, 1.76 [1.22-2.30]) and psychological well-being (adjusted difference [95% CI] at week 4, 1.04 [0.28-1.80]; week 8, 2.68 [1.89-3.47]; week 24, 2.95 [2.13-3.76]), and with a large improvement in sleep-related quality of life (at week 4, -8.76 [-11.83 to -5.69]; week 8, -17.60 [-20.81 to -14.39]; week 24, -18.72 [-22.04 to -15.41]) (all P < .01). A large improvement in insomnia mediated these outcomes (range mediated, 45.5%-84.0%). Conclusions and Relevance: Use of dCBT is effective in improving functional health, psychological well-being, and sleep-related quality of life in people reporting insomnia symptoms. A reduction in insomnia symptoms mediates these improvements. These results confirm that dCBT improves both daytime and nighttime aspects of insomnia, strengthening existing recommendations of CBT as the treatment of choice for insomnia. Trial Registration: identifier: ISRCTN60530898.

  • Large-scale roll out of electronic longitudinal mood-monitoring for research in affective disorders: Report from the UK bipolar disorder research network.

    11 February 2019

    BACKGROUND: Electronic longitudinal mood monitoring has been shown to be acceptable to patients with affective disorders within clinical settings, but its use in large-scale research has not yet been established. METHODS: Using both postal and email invitations, we invited 4080 past research participants with affective disorders who were recruited into the Bipolar Disorder Research Network (BDRN) over a 10 year period to participate in online weekly mood monitoring. In addition, since January 2015 we have invited all newly recruited BDRN research participants to participate in mood monitoring at the point they were recruited into BDRN. RESULTS: Online mood monitoring uptake among past participants was 20%, and among new participants to date was 46% with participants recruited over the last year most likely to register (61%). More than 90% mood monitoring participants engaged for at least one month, with mean engagement period greater than one year (58 weeks) and maximum engagement for longer than three years (165 weeks). There were no significant differences in the proportion of past and new BDRN participants providing data for at least 4 weeks (91%, 92% respectively), 3 months (78%, 82%), 6 months (65%, 54%) or one year (51%, 44%). LIMITATIONS: Our experiences with recruiting participants for electronic prospective mood monitoring may not necessarily generalise fully to research situations that are very different from those we describe. CONCLUSIONS: Large-scale electronic longitudinal mood monitoring in affective disorders for research purposes is feasible with uptake highest among newly recruited participants.

  • Committees and Management

    22 August 2018

    The Department has a range of working groups, committees and staff networks that we encourage you to get involved with. Committee/working group membership is a great way to meet other members of the Department and contribute to Department strategy and decision-making. Although membership can be an addition to individual workload, it is a valued pathway for career progression, playing a key role in our Awards for Excellence, PDR, and Recognition of Distinction processes. We aim to achieve a fair and accurate representation of our Department members by gender, staff type and students on all our committees. If you have ideas about how we can do this better, please do get in touch.

  • Homepage

    12 June 2018

  • Profiles

    2 August 2018

  • Department life

    22 August 2018

  • Current studies

    19 July 2018

    We are running a number of current studies - get in contact if you would like to participate!


    20 June 2018

    This site brings together all the PERL studies currently running and news on our research and events.

  • Work with us

    18 October 2016

  • News

    21 March 2019

  • Volunteers needed for a study investigating the effects of mental exercises

    22 January 2018

    You would be invited to the Department of Psychiatry (Warneford Hospital) for two study sessions. Both sessions would take approximately 60 to 90 minutes. Between the sessions you would be assigned a brief mental exercise (taking approximately 10 minutes per day) that you carry out for 7 days. After this training period, your performance on a range of computerized psychological tasks will be assessed.

  • Dynamics of perceptual decision making

    17 April 2018

    During this study you will learn and perform a task that involves judging the direction of motion of clouds of moving dots. You will participate in a maximum of 4 sessions; first you will learn how to do the task on a computer. Then you will do 1-2 sessions performing the task while we record your brain activity using magnetoencephalography (MEG). MEG is a safe neuro-imaging technique that records the weak magnetic fields produced by the synchronised firing of neurons in the brain. MEG sessions will last up to 2 hours. Finally, we will make a 3D image of your brain using magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) which we will use to localise the neural generators of the MEG signals.

  • Daylight Study: Pilot Study of Digital Cognitive Behavioural Therapy for Anxiety

    30 October 2018

    Most people with anxiety struggle with worry and stress. Getting help in person can be challenging for a number of reasons, which is why this study aims to find out whether digital Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (a psychological treatment delivered via a mobile app) can help improve anxiety. The study is suitable for adults aged 18 years and above who have persistent problems with anxiety.

  • Are you interested in how sleep functions and how sleep affects your mood?

    15 November 2018

    We are looking for female participants between the ages of 18 and 35 years to take part in our study called Sleep in Borderline Personality Disorder (SBPD).We require two types of participants: (1) healthy volunteers with no history of a psychological disorder and (2) participants that have been diagnosed with borderline personality disorder. We are investigating the differences in sleep, heart rate, and mood patterns, between people with borderline personality disorder compared with healthy volunteers.

  • Healthy volunteers needed for emotional processing study

    12 June 2018

    Volunteers should be right handed, have no history of a psychological disorder such as depression, anxiety, or an eating disorder, no previous participation in a study using computerised tasks with emotional faces, and no participation in a drug study within the last 3 months. Central University Research Ethics Committee number: R57219/RE001

  • The effect of losartan on fear learning

    6 September 2017

    We are looking for healthy volunteers aged 18-40 years and fluent in English to take part in a study investigating how a single dose of the medication losartan affects learning and information processing, using a simple computer task. Losartan is currently used to treat high blood pressure. However, we think that it may also enhance the effectiveness of psychological therapies such as Cognitive-Behaviour Therapy. The study involves three appointments of about 5 hours in total.


    2 July 2018

    MRI is a type of brain scan that allows us to see how the brain is organised and performs tasks like decision making. The scan is safe and does not involve any needles or injections. Who are we looking for? Fluent English-speaking men or women aged 18-45, who are not pregnant, with a range of symptoms of depression. You will be asked questions about your medical history to check your suitability for an MRI scan.