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The 22nd NIMH Conference on Mental Health Services Research

Science Update

22nd NIMH Conference on Mental Health Services Research

The 22nd National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) Conference on Mental Health Services Research (MHSR): Research in Pursuit of a Learning Mental Health Care System, will be convened on April 23–25, 2014, at the Natcher Conference Center on the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Campus, Bethesda, MD.

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NIH-funded Study Defines Treatment Window for HIV-positive Children Infected at Birth

Press Release

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HIV-positive children older than 1 year who were treated after showing moderate HIV-related symptoms did not experience greater cognitive or behavior problems compared to peers treated when signs of their infection were still mild, according to a study funded by the National Institutes of Health.

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Thinking Globally to Improve Mental Health

Press Release

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Mental health experts are calling for a greater world focus on improving access to care and treatment for mental, neurological, and substance use (MNS) disorders, as well as increasing discoveries in research that will enable this goal to be met.

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Many School-aged Children with ASD in South Korea Go Undiagnosed

Science Update

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The prevalence of autism spectrum disorder (ASD) among children in South Korea appears to be much higher than the range of estimates reported for other countries, according to a study partly funded by NIMH. Furthermore, two-thirds of ASD cases were found in children attending mainstream schools, had not been previously diagnosed, and had never received treatment for the disorder. The study was published on May 9, 2011, in the American Journal of Psychiatry.

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NIMH Teams Up to Study ASD Rates in Somali-American Children

Science Update

mother playing with baby

NIMH will be supporting a joint effort with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and Autism Speaks, a private advocacy organization, to investigate reports of elevated prevalence of autism spectrum disorders (ASD) among children born to Somali immigrants living in Minneapolis, Minn.

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Children Carry Emotional Burden of AIDS Epidemic in China

Science Update

Researcher interviewing with teen study participant

Having a parent with HIV/AIDS or losing one or both parents to the illness leads to poorer mental health among children in China, according to a recent study funded in part by NIMH. Published in the November–December 2009 issue of the Journal of Pediatric Psychology, the study also emphasizes the need to develop culturally and developmentally appropriate measures and interventions for diverse populations.

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Teaching Teens About Abstinence May Delay Sexual Activity, Reduce Risk Behaviors

Science Update

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Teens who received a behavioral intervention centered on abstinence were more likely to delay first sexual contact than teens who received a control intervention focusing on general health promotion, according to an NIMH-funded study. Though differing from federally funded abstinence-only programs, the researchers describe how an abstinence-based intervention may help delay sexual activity among adolescents in the February 2010 issue of the Archives of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine.

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Just Over Half of Americans Diagnosed with Major Depression Receive Care

Science Update

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Overall, only about half of Americans diagnosed with major depression in a given year receive treatment for it, and even fewer—about one fifth—receive treatment consistent with current practice guidelines, according to data from nationally representative surveys supported by NIMH. Among the ethnic/racial groups surveyed, African Americans and Mexican Americans had the lowest rates of use of depression care; all groups reported higher use of past-year psychotherapy vs. medication for depression.

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Brief, Clinic-Based, Peer-led Intervention Helps Reduce Subsequent STDs in African American Men

Science Update

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A brief, one-time intervention delivered by a trained peer health advisor was an effective and low-cost method for reducing new infections among young, heterosexual, African American men diagnosed with a sexually transmitted disease (STD), according to an NIMH-funded study. Such programs may help reduce STD-related health disparities, which currently affect a disproportionate number of African American men in the United States. The study was published in the April 2009 supplemental issue of the American Journal of Public Health.

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HIV Prevention Program Gets a Boost From NIMH Recovery Act Funds

Press Release

Developing interventions to reduce the spread of HIV and other sexually transmitted infections among heterosexual men, couples and ethnically diverse populations continues to be complex and challenging. To help address this issue, NIMH awarded a two-year grant to David Pérez-Jiménez, Ph.D., at the University of Puerto Rico, to support the adaptation and assessment of an HIV and other sexually transmitted infection intervention designed for young, heterosexual Latino couples. This grant will use funds allocated to NIMH through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act to promote economic recovery and spur advances in science and health.

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Black Teens, Especially Girls, at High Risk for Suicide Attempts

Science Update

Black American teens, especially females, may be at high risk for attempting suicide even if they have never been diagnosed with a mental disorder, according to researchers funded in part by NIMH. Their findings, based on responses from adolescent participants in the National Survey of American Life (NSAL), provide the first national estimates of suicidal thoughts and behaviors (ideation) and suicide attempts in 13- to 17-year-old black youth in the United States. The study was published in the March 2009 issue of the Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry.

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Personality Disorders Prevalent, Under-Treated, in South Africa

Science Update

Almost seven percent of South African people age 20 or older have a personality disorder, an umbrella term for several personality types characterized by chronic social dysfunction, a large study funded by NIMH and others reveals.

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HIV-associated Neurological Disease Prevalent in Asia-Pacific Region

Science Update

A new study finds a significant rate of HIV-related neurological disease among HIV-positive populations living in the Asian-Pacific region.

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Couples-based Intervention May Limit HIV Transmission in African Countries

Science Update

A shift to a couples-based intervention for married and cohabiting couples in urban Zambia and Rwanda could prevent up to 60 percent of new HIV infections that would otherwise occur, according to an NIMH-funded study published June 27, 2008, in The Lancet.

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Journal Highlights Effectiveness of Research Based Psychotherapies for Youth

Science Update

Reviews of the current research on psychosocial and behavioral therapies, or psychotherapies, for children and adolescents found a number of well established and probably efficacious treatments for many mental disorders. For example, six were probably efficacious for anxiety disorders, and two were well established for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), according to scientists funded by NIMH and the National Institute on Drug Abuse, divisions of the National Institutes of Health.

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Gene Variants Protect Against Adult Depression Triggered by Childhood Stress

Press Release

Certain variations in a gene that helps regulate response to stress tend to protect adults who were abused in childhood from developing depression, according to new research funded by the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), part of the National Institutes of Health. Adults who had been abused but didn’t have the variations in the gene had twice the symptoms of moderate to severe depression, compared to those with the protective variations.

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Foreign Nativity May Not Always Protect Against Mental Disorders in the US

Science Update

Though all Latino immigrants tend to display better overall mental health compared to their US-born counterparts, a recent study by NIMH-funded researchers has found that the protective benefits of foreign nativity vary widely across subgroups of this population. Factors such as neighborhood stability, perceived discrimination, and the strength of family bonds all combine to influence the prevalence of mental disorders across distinctive Latino ethnic groups. The finding reflects varying immigration and acculturation processes experienced by Mexicans, Cubans, Puerto Ricans and other Latino groups. Results of the study were published in the July 2007 issue of Social Science and Medicine.

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Family-Centered Intervention Effectively Reduces Risky Behavior Among Hispanic Youth

Science Update

Science Update December 20, 2007 Family-centered Intervention Effectively Reduces Risky Behavior Among Hispanic Youth A family-centered program that improves parent-child dynamics and family functioning is more effective at discouraging Hispanic youth from engaging in risky behavior than programs that target specific behaviors, according to a study published in the December 2007 issue of the Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology.

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New Insights on how Mental Health is Influenced by Culture and Immigration Status

Science Update

A special issue of Research in Human Development, published in June 2007, examines current trends in prevalence and risk factors for mental disorders across the lifespan in diverse U.S. minority populations

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African Americans, Black Caribbeans, and Whites Differ in Depression Risk, Treatment

Science Update

Although black Americans are less likely than whites to have a major depressive disorder (MDD), when they do, it tends to be more chronic and severe.

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U.S.-born Children of Immigrants May Have Higher Risk for Mental Disorders Than Parents

Science Update

In the first studies to examine the effects of immigration and years of residence on the mental health of Caribbean Black, Latino, and Asian populations in the United States, NIMH-funded researchers found that immigrants in general appear to have lower rates of mental disorders than their U.S.-born counterparts.

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New Data on Suicidal Behaviors in Black Americans May Guide Interventions

Science Update

The prevalence of attempted suicide among black Americans is higher than previously reported, but near the levels reported for the general population.

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NIMH Expands Public Health Education Effort To Reach Latino Men With Depression

Press Release

The National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), part of the National Institutes of Health, today is launching a new effort in the Real Men Real Depression campaign — Spanish-language materials to inform the Latino community about depression and to encourage men who are depressed to seek help.

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PTSD, Depression Epidemic Among Cambodian Immigrants

Press Release

More than two decades after they fled the Khmer Rouge reign of terror, most Cambodian refugees who resettled in the United States remain traumatized, a study funded by the National Institutes of Health's (NIH) National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) and National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA) has found.

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Medication and Psychotherapy Treat Depression in Low-Income Minority Women

Press Release

Treatment with medication or psychotherapy reduced depressive symptoms in women from minority populations, according to research funded by the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH).

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NIMH Awards Howard University $6.5 Million

Press Release

Howard University Hospital Department of Psychiatry in the College of Medicine (HUCM) has been awarded $6.5 million from the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) for a five-year project to implement and develop research studies pertaining to mood and anxiety disorders.

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