Genetic Link to Suicide: BDNF Marker Val66Met

Is there a genetic link to suicide? Image by Delaware Biotechnology Institute

The tragedy of suicide has a ripple effect, traumatizing those left behind and sometimes creating a contagion effect, especially among adolescents and young adults.  Studies have revealed various risk factors for suicide, with alcohol dependency standing out as a major factor.  The risk for suicidal ideation and completion is increased 60 to 120 times in […]

Dissociative Identity Disorder: A Mysterious and Challenging Condition

Dissociative Identity Disorder (formeraly Multiple Personality)

Dissociative Identity Disorder, formerly called Multiple Personality Disorder, is a devastating condition for the individual burdened with it, but fascinating to the general public.  D.I.D. has been the focus of several books and movies, thus sensationalized and usually misunderstood.  Some medical doctors have been known to deny the existence of dissociation, much to the dismay of the […]

Traumatization and Self-Destructive Behaviour

Community and Family Support Reduces Traumatization Image by Andrea Booher

Some people who have been subjected to traumatic experiences engage in repetitive self-destructive behaviours including the abuse of drugs, and suffer from fears that interfere with everyday functioning at work and at home.  On the other hand, the majority of people who undergo trauma are not severely affected over the long term by these experiences, and this often […]

Schizophrenia Research: Recent Advances in Treatment and Diagnosis

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Investigating schizophrenia research is like watching a piece of marble being chipped away, small flake by small flake, slowly revealing the sculptural form underneath.  Little about schizophrenia, from the diagnosis to the prognosis, is firmly established. Recently, researchers have come closer to a “Eureka” moment with the discovery of malfunctioning genes in the brain cells of some schizophrenic patients. Schizophrenia […]

How Does Science Define Intelligence?

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What does it mean to be intelligent?  What are the characteristics, talents, achievements, or the degree of neuronal complexity that separates the average from the gifted?  Most of us could provide numerous examples of people we consider intelligent, but would we agree on the constructs of intelligence?  What about accomplished academics or wealthy, successful business tycoons […]