The editorial in this issue reviews the orexins/hypocretins, a recently recognized group of
neuropeptides, involved in sleep, arousal, narcolepsy and possibly other disorders.
Two articles concern epidemiology. Kessler and colleagues (pp. 959–976) report large scale
development and validation of 10-item and 6-item versions of a scale with impressive performance
in screening for DSM-IV psychiatric disorder in US and Australian general populations. Sacker &
Wiggins (pp. 977–990) use two longitudinal cohort studies to examine gender and social class
differences in psychological distress. Both narrowed over two decades with the higher rates in
women and those in manual occupations falling, to become nearer males and non-manual
occupations. Disadvantage is apparently lessening.
In another study of gender and disorder Fergusson and colleagues in New Zealand (pp. 991–996)
find that the greater exposure of females to sexual violence explains some, but not all of their greater
liability to internalizing disorders. In other aetiological studies, Enns et al. (pp. 997–1008) find
associations of community disorder with lack of care on the Parental Bonding Instrument, while
Reichborn-Kjennerud et al. (pp. 1009–1020) in a Norwegian twin sample find genetic links between
back-neck pain and anxiety and depressive symptoms.
Four studies concern depression. In an important neuroendocrine study of chronic depression
Watson et al. (pp. 1021–1028) find absence of the usual depressive HPA axis abnormalities, strongly
suggesting that these normalize with time. Matsuo et al. (pp. 1029–1038) employ the little-used
non-invasive technique of near infrared spectroscopy, to show a reduction in euthymic affective disorder
patients compared with controls in the increase of oxyHb in the frontal region during a verbal
fluency task and during hyperventilation, indicating persisting or antecedent abnormalities. In a
controlled trial Chabrol et al. (pp. 1039–1047) find a brief cognitive-behavioural intervention
reduces depression scores in postpartum mothers at risk for post-natal depression. Fava et al.
(pp. 1049–1057) find personality disorder diagnoses to decline in frequency after treatment for
depression, suggesting that depression contributes to and antidepressant ameliorates the behaviours
and attitudes which comprise the personality disorders.
Two studies interface with psychoimmunology. In an important prospective study over up to 9
years, Leserman et al. (pp. 1059–1073) find progression of HIV accelerated by stressful life events,
dysphoric mood and raised cortisol. Arnold et al. (pp. 1075–1089) report effects of inducing
influenza-like symptoms in patients with chronic fatigue syndrome compared with normal controls.
While somatic symptoms of CFS were exacerbated, cognitive and mood symptoms were not.
Three papers report findings in schizophrenia. Hooley & Campbell (pp. 1091–1099) find high
expressed emotion relatives attribute more control to ill family members than do low EE relatives,
but are actually themselves more controlling. Their high control predicts relapse in schizophrenia
but not depression. Gooding & Tallent (pp. 1101–1107) find that schizophrenics show atypical
perceptual biases in response to emotional chimeric faces. Malla et al. (pp. 1109–1119) report
predictors of outcome at 1 year of first-episode psychosis, including some potential modifiable
factors such as medication adherence and residual symptoms.