Biological Psychology (BIOL PSYCHOL )

Publisher: Elsevier


Biological Psychology publishes original scientific papers on the biological aspects of psychological states and processes. Biological aspects include electrophysiology and biochemical assessments during psychological experiments as well as biologically induced changes in psychological function. Psychological investigations based on biological theories are also of interest. All aspects of psychological functioning, to include psychopathology, are germane. The Journal concentrates on work with human subjects, but welcomes work with animal subjects conceptually related to issues in human biological psychology. Empirical reports are the core of the Journal but review articles as well as technical notes relevant to biological psychology are encouraged. A brief report section will publish well written papers of less than 900 words with minimal delays from the submission date. Book reports and critical commentary of relevance to our readership are also published. Finally, announcements are provided particularly of national and international meetings of interest to our readership.

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  • 5-year impact
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  • Website
    Biological Psychology website
  • Other titles
    Biological psychology (Online)
  • ISSN
  • OCLC
  • Material type
    Document, Periodical, Internet resource
  • Document type
    Internet Resource, Computer File, Journal / Magazine / Newspaper

Publisher details


  • Pre-print
    • Author can archive a pre-print version
  • Post-print
    • Author can archive a post-print version
  • Conditions
    • Voluntary deposit by author of pre-print allowed on Institutions open scholarly website and pre-print servers
    • Voluntary deposit by author of authors post-print allowed on institutions open scholarly website including Institutional Repository
    • Deposit due to Funding Body, Institutional and Governmental mandate only allowed where separate agreement between repository and publisher exists
    • Set statement to accompany deposit
    • Published source must be acknowledged
    • Must link to journal home page or articles' DOI
    • Publisher's version/PDF cannot be used
    • Articles in some journals can be made Open Access on payment of additional charge
    • NIH Authors articles will be submitted to PMC after 12 months
    • Authors who are required to deposit in subject repositories may also use Sponsorship Option
    • Pre-print can not be deposited for The Lancet
  • Classification
    ​ green

Publications in this journal

  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Alterations in hormone levels during aging have been shown to impact on cognitive functioning and mood. However, with respect to sex and sex-related hormones research has mainly focused on testosterone and estradiol. Serum concentration levels of testosterone (TT), estradiol (E2), follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH), luteinizing hormone (LH), dehydroepiandrosterone sulfate (DHEAS) and prolactin (PRL) were assessed at fasting in 120 community-dwellers (51+ years of age, males and females), in a cross-sectional approach. An extensive battery of neurocognitive/psychological and quality of life instruments was administered. Performance clusters based on executive functioning (GENEXEC), memory (MEM), mood and well-being (sleep, quality of life and nutritional status) measures were obtained. In males, higher PRL levels were associated with worse cognitive performance, lower well-being scores, and higher scores in depression scales. Additionally, E2 levels were significantly lower in individuals with higher depressive mood and poorer cognitive functioning. Linear regression analyses revealed that in males DHEAS is positively associated with GENEXEC and MEM, after adjustment of the remaining hormones and socio demographic variables. Higher PRL levels were associated with higher depressive mood and lower well-being. Nutritional status was significantly associated with PRL (positively) and with DHEAS (negatively). These findings indicate that besides the more exhaustively studied impact of E2 and TT on cognition and depression, variations in the levels of sex-related hormones such as PRL, FSH, LH and DHEAS are of interest for the mental health aging profile.
    Biological Psychology 12/2014; 103:158-166.
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    ABSTRACT: The goal of this study was to understand the roles of maternal history of childhood sexual abuse (CSA) and current family functioning on the cortisol awakening response (CAR) in pregnancy. Participants were 185 pregnant women (ages 18–40) who completed items from the Adverse Childhood Experiences scale to measure child maltreatment history and the Family Assessment Device to measure current family functioning. Participants provided saliva samples at wake-up and 30 min after wake-up at 25, 29, and 35 weeks gestation to measure CAR. A moderation effect was found such that participants with more severe CSA histories and poorer perceived family functioning had increasing CAR in pregnancy compared to participants with less severe CSA histories and better family functioning. These findings highlight the importance of considering stress in both childhood and current environments in predicting maternal cortisol in pregnancy.
    Biological Psychology 12/2014;
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    ABSTRACT: Distortions in interoceptive accuracy have been linked to somatoform disorders. In line with cognitive theories of symptom formation in somatoform disorders, decreases in interoceptive accuracy have recently been observed to co-occur with more severe symptom reports. The current study tested the hypothesis that experimentally increasing interoceptive accuracy should decrease symptom severity in somatoform disorders. Twenty-nine patients with somatoform disorders were instructed in a newly developed heartbeat perception training procedure. Heartbeat perception, as a proxy for interoceptive accuracy, was assessed with a mental tracking task. Although there were no significant differences between the training group and a waiting control group (n = 23) regarding increases in heartbeat perception, health anxiety served as a moderator and significant reductions in state symptom reports were observed after training. These findings suggest a relation between lower interoceptive accuracy and the perception of bodily symptoms in somatoform disorders.
    Biological Psychology 01/2014; 101:69-76.
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    ABSTRACT: We examined whether the combined indices of respiratory sinus arrhythmia at rest (resting RSA) and in response to a sad film (RSA reactivity) predict effective and ineffective responses to reduce sadness (adaptive vs. maladaptive mood repair) in women with histories of juvenile-onset depression (n = 74) and no history of major mental disorders (n = 75). Structural equation models were used to estimate latent resting RSA, depression, and adaptive and maladaptive mood repair and to test the study hypotheses. Results indicated that combinations of resting RSA+RSA reactivity (RSA patterns) predicted maladaptive mood repair, which in turn, mediated the effects of RSA pattern on depression. Further, RSA patterns moderated the depressogenic effects of maladaptive mood repair. RSA patterns were unrelated to adaptive mood repair. Our findings suggest that mood repair is one mechanism through which physiological vulnerabilities adversely affect mental health.
    Biological Psychology 01/2013;
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    ABSTRACT: The aim of the present study was to examine the transient cardiovascular response to the perception of humor, that is, the impact of the cognitive process of insight as well as the modulation of the response by the affective appraisal of the humor. To this end transient heart rate, stroke volume, cardiac output, and blood pressure responses were obtained in the immediate context of detecting the punch line in cartoons. Fine-grained analysis of the transient behavior of cardiovascular variables during viewing the cartoons was contrasted to non-humorous cartoon-like pictures. The detection of a punch line was accompanied by relative heart rate acceleration in conjunction with increased cardiac output, which was more pronounced the more amusing the cartoons were perceived. These results provide first evidence of the usefulness of cardiovascular variables for detecting the moment of insight and the quantification of the size of the emotional response accompanying it.
    Biological Psychology 01/2013; 93:33-40.