Depression, epilepsy and some more pop sociology: Joy Division and Ian Curtis (updated)

In this piece (which started out considering the psychological value of play, idleness, and boredom), I wondered if “there [was] something significant in the fact that all of these bands emerged from the industrialised north of England during the 1970’s and 1980’s (Morrissey – Manchester; The Specials – Coventry; Pet Shop Boys – Newcastle and Blackpool) during a… Read More

Business leaders must take a stand on mental health – FT.com

Business leaders must take a stand on mental health – FT.com via Business leaders must take a stand on mental health – FT.com. Great, timely and important piece. A quote: The fact that we only talk about workplace stress when there is a high-profile case of mental ill-health is a problem. And another: … mental… Read More

A Model of Cotard’s Syndrome – A Secondary Consequence of Antiviral Treatment for Coldsores

I’ve made a brief mention of  Cotard’s here before – to be convinced that one’s self is dead (see also, toward the end). Via @robertmckenna, here’s an amazing piece which suggests that: Via New Scientist, the bizarre, unintended side effect of a cold sore medication suggests that it may be possible to engineer a drug that induces the living-dead mental state: Pharmacologists have… Read More

DSM 5 controversies and a ‘novel’ reading of its contents

The new Diagnostic and Statistical Manual, version 5 was released in May, attended by DSM 5 Controversies in the media, blogs and the academic literature (see this also). Thomas Insell (Director of the NIMH) comments that The goal of this new manual, as with all previous editions, is to provide a common language for describing psychopathology. While DSM has been described as a “Bible”… Read More

Exploring the recollective experience during autobiographical memory retrieval in amnestic mild cognitive impairment.

Take-home message: there are greater levels of autobiographical memory (memory for the episodes and events of your life and general knowledge of the world) impairment in amnestic mild cognitive impairment (aMCI: a greater than expected deficit in cognitive function for age and education) seen than previously assumed. More on MCI, which is often thought of as being prodromal for Alzheimer’s disease (AD), as a proportion of… Read More

Maybe neuroscience needs ‘malbrain’ to complement cell biology’s ‘cancer’ in the public mind…***

Previously, I wondered why there was no hue-and-cry over the huge disinvestment in brain research over the past decade, and why, by comparison, cancer research does well.* ‘Cancer‘ is understood by the public at large, by the political establishment, by the pharmaceutical companies and a host of other stakeholders as a single-word issue of great and pressing concern to… Read More

Why the lack of spending on neuroscience? A comparison with cancer research spending, and a neologism (‘malbrain’).

Previously, I wondered why there is no hue and cry about the loss of research budgets for neuroscience. Comparing research spends between areas is not easy. This paper (Sobocki et al., 2006) has some data: Abstract This article is a markedly condensed summary of a longer report [Resource allocation to brain research in Europe (RABRE), part 2] that… Read More