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In This Issue of JAMA Psychiatry
October 2015


JAMA Psychiatry. 2015;72(10):957. doi:10.1001/jamapsychiatry.2014.1912


Low resting heart rate is a well-established correlate of antisocial behavior in children and adolescents. Latvala and coauthors studied resting heart data and records of criminal convictions, assaults, and unintentional injuries in Swedish men. Men with low resting heart rate in late adolescence were at increased risk for violent and nonviolent criminality, being exposed to assault, and unintentional injury in adulthood. In an editorial, Raine discusses the importance of low resting heart rate in violence and antisocial behavior.


Author Audio Interview

Most studies of suicide explore the biological and psychological determinants. Tsai and coauthors used Nurses’ Health Study data to study the effect of social integration on suicide risk. During more than 1.2 million person-years of follow-up, there were 43 suicide events. The relative hazard of suicide was lowest among nurses in the highest category of social integration. Women who were socially well integrated had a more than 3-fold lower risk for suicide. In an editorial, Caine reviews sociological research devoted to suicide.


Previous studies have linked cannabis use to changes in brain structure. As part of the Human Connectome Project, Pagliaccio and coauthors studied sibling pairs who differed with respect to cannabis use (unexposed, exposed, or discordant for cannabis use). Cannabis exposure was associated with smaller left amygdala and right ventral striatum volumes. The smaller amygdala volume was not simply caused by cannabis use but was primarily due to familial factors shared by siblings. In an editorial, Goldman discusses the potential consequences of cannabis use.


Cannabis use during adolescence is associated with elevated risk for schizophrenia but the biological mechanisms for this effect are not known. Paus and coauthors used genetic, brain imaging, and cannabis use data to assess the impact of schizophrenia risk genes on the relationship between cannabis use and cortical maturation. Cannabis use had a negative impact on cortical thickness in men with a high schizophrenia polygenic risk, suggesting that cortical maturation mediates the link between cannabis and schizophrenia. In an editorial, Goldman discusses the potential consequences of cannabis use.


Generalized anxiety disorder is common in older adults, but access to treatment is limited in rural areas. Brenes and coauthors compared 2 telephone-delivered therapies, cognitive behavioral therapy and nondirective supportive therapy, in a randomized clinical trial of 141 adults 60 years and older. Cognitive behavioral therapy was superior to nondirective supportive therapy in reducing worry, generalized anxiety disorder symptoms, and depressive symptoms. In an editorial, Lenze discusses the role of mobile behavioral health services in the treatment of older adults with mental illness.


Continuing Medical Education