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Guenole F.,Caen University Hospital Center | Louis J.,French Institute of Health and Medical Research | Creveuil C.,Caen University Hospital Center | Creveuil C.,University of Caen Lower Normandy | And 6 more authors.
Encephale | Year: 2013

Introduction: Intellectually gifted children are often thought to display a high risk for psychopathology. However, this assertion has received only few direct arguments to date, and there is in fact a lack of knowledge on this subject. The aim of this study was to compare trait-anxiety - which is considered as a sensitive and early indicator of psychoaffective difficulties in children - in intellectually gifted children to the norm. Methods: One hundred and eleven children aged 8 to 12 and with an intellectual quotient (IQ) higher than 129 participated in the study. They were recruited in a hospital department of child and adolescent psychiatry and through psychologists' private practice, where they attended consultation because of academic underachievement and/or social maladjustment. All the children were examined by trained psychiatrists and psychologists: none had a present or past medical or psychiatric condition and, additionally, none had an elevated score on the French version of the Children's Depressive Rating Scale Revised (Moor & Mack, 1982). Parents filled in a questionnaire for the collection of socio-demographic data and children answered the French version of the Revised-Children's Manifest Anxiety Scale (R-CMAS; Reynolds, 1999), a 37-items self-assessment of trait-anxiety, the psychometric properties of which have been validated in children with high IQ. Data analysis: Mean scores and subscores on the R-CMAS in the whole studied group and as a function of gender and age were compared to French normative data (Reynolds, 1999) by calculation of 95% confidence intervals; subgroups were compared using Student's t-tests. Proportions of children who's score and subscores exceeded anxiety cut-off norms were compared to normative data using chi-square tests. Statistical significance was considered at the P < 0.05 level. Results: The studied group comprised mainly boys, and members of a sibling. Parents mainly lived as man and wife, had high academic levels, and had a professional activity. The confidence intervals of the R-CMAS scores and subscores all comprised their normative value, which denotes that no difference was statistically significant. Comparisons for age and gender showed no significant difference. Proportions of results exceeding the cut-off scores and subscores did not significantly differ from the norms. Discussion: General and dimensional trait-anxiety levels in the studied group were comparable to normative data. These results are in accordance with previous studies of trait-anxiety in children and adolescents with high IQ, which all showed normal or decreased levels. These findings do not corroborate the hypothesis that intellectual giftedness constitutes a risk factor for psychopathology. Limits: The studied group was a clinical one, which could limit the generalisation of the results. However, mental disorders were ruled out, and the psychometric and socio-demographic characteristics of the group were in keeping with those described for the general population of gifted children. Moreover, considering that participant children displayed academic underachievement and/or social maladjustment, it can be supposed that their anxiety levels were not lower than those in the general population of gifted children. Secondly, the potentially confusing effect of socio-demographic variables (underrepresentation of low socio-economic levels and single-parent families) could not be statistically taken into account, due to the absence of a specific control group. Conclusion: Intellectually gifted children seem not to display increased trait-anxiety. However, further studies are necessary to investigate psychological functioning in gifted children and their risk for psychopathology. © 2013 L'Encéphale, Paris.

Botbol M.,French Institute of Health and Medical Research | Roubertoux P.L.,Aix - Marseille University | Carlier M.,Aix - Marseille University | Trabado S.,University Paris - Sud | And 7 more authors.
PLoS ONE | Year: 2011

Background: Several studies in animal models suggest a possible effect of the specific part of the Y-chromosome (YNPAR) on brain opioid, and more specifically on brain β-endorphin (BE). In humans, male prevalence is found in autistic disorder in which observation of abnormal peripheral or central BE levels are also reported. This suggests gender differences in BE associated with genetic factors and more precisely with YNPAR. Methodology/Principal Findings: Brain BE levels and plasma testosterone concentrations were measured in two highly inbred strains of mice, NZB/BlNJ (N) and CBA/HGnc (H), and their consomic strains for the YNPAR. An indirect effect of the YNPAR on brain BE level via plasma testosterone was also tested by studying the correlation between brain BE concentration and plasma testosterone concentration in eleven highly inbred strains. There was a significant and major effect (P<0.0001) of the YNPAR in interaction with the genetic background on brain BE levels. Effect size calculated using Cohen's procedure was large (56% of the total variance). The variations of BE levels were not correlated with plasma testosterone which was also dependent of the YNPAR. Conclusions/Significance: The contribution of YNPAR on brain BE concentration in interaction with the genetic background is the first demonstration of Y-chromosome mediated control of brain opioid. Given that none of the genes encompassed by the YNPAR encodes for BE or its precursor, our results suggest a contribution of the sex-determining region (Sry, carried by YNPAR) to brain BE concentration. Indeed, the transcription of the Melanocortin 2 receptor gene (Mc2R gene, identified as the proopiomelanocortin receptor gene) depends on the presence of Sry and BE is derived directly from proopiomelanocortin. The results shed light on the sex dependent differences in brain functioning and the role of Sry in the BE system might be related to the higher frequency of autistic disorder in males. © 2011 Botbol et al.

Sauvagnat F.,University of Rennes 2 – Upper Brittany | Wiss M.,Service Hospitalo University Of Psychiatrie Of Lenfant Et Of Ladolescent | Clement S.,Service Hospitalo University Of Psychiatrie Of Lenfant Et Of Ladolescent
Journal of Physiology Paris | Year: 2010

The aim of this article is to present and discuss the connections between psychoanalysis and neuroscience from a historical viewpoint. We start by examining how Sigmund Freud can be viewed as a pioneer in the interaction between these two fields. Freud was himself a neurologist and had maintained an interest in biology as he developed the key concepts of psychoanalysis. His ideas regarding psychosomatics are described. We will also explore how the concept of drive is essential to the connection between psychoanalysis and neuroscience. Then, we describe several key actors and historical events and characters at the interface of these two fields, namely Sándor Radó Lawrence S. Kubie and Mc Culloch, the debates that took place during the Macy conferences, as well as the positions of Jacques Lacan, George L. Engel, and Eric Kandel. Finally, we present a synthesis of the main fields in which the connections between psychoanalysis and neuroscience are already fruitful, and those where they should be developed: the classification of mental diseases, the link between the scientific and psychic dimensions, therapeutics, the organization of the body, intersubjectivity, the subjective division and ambivalence, as well as transferential effects like such as the placebo and nocebo effects. In the conclusion, we advocate several strategic alliances and underscore the complementarity between rigorous scientific experimentation and the individualized psychoanalytic approach. © 2010 Elsevier Ltd.

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