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April 2015

Identifying Molecular Markers for Major Depression

Apr 30
Studies over many years have shown the importance of early intervention in treating mental disorders.  More attention now is being placed on identification of the early warning signs of a mental health problem such as poor concentration, irritability, difficulties in decision making and social withdrawal.  
New scientific studies are showing we are closer to finding tests and imaging that would reveal depression biomarkers and potentially allow for very early identification of predisposition to depression.
Researchers at University of Oxford found that the sequencing of the amount of mtDNA and mean telomere length—two components of the genome suspected to be associated with adverse life experiences—revealed a significant association between major depression and the...


Psychotherapy in Canada: "What is not insured, is simply not accessible"

Apr 10
Psychotherapy in Canada: "What is not insured, is simply not accessible"

I recently read an insightful letter by Dr. Alain Lesage, MD, MPhil, written to the Canadian Medical Association Journal (CMAJ), regarding the lack of accessibility of in-person psychotherapy for many in Canada, due to the lack of coverage for the cost of those services under our publicly funded health care system. You can read his full letter here, although you may need to have subscriber access to do so.

Dr. Lesage made an excellent point in noting that the need for medications for mental health treatment in Canada was covered, while the need for psychotherapy was not; this is according to a 2012 Statistics Canada survey on community mental health. You can read the report on that study here: http://statcan.gc.ca/pub/82-003-x/2013009/article/11863...