Positive an Negative Affectivity and Their Relation to Anxiety and Depressive Disorders

Journal of Abnormal Psychology (Impact Factor: 4.86). 09/1988; 97(3):346-53. DOI: 10.1037/0021-843X.97.3.346
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Distinguishing between depression and anxiety has been a matter of concern and controversy for some time. Studies in normal samples have suggested, however, that assessment of two broad mood factors—Negative Affect (NA) and Positive Affect (PA)—may improve their differentiation. The present study extends these findings to a clinical sample. As part of an ongoing twin study, 90 inpatient probands and 60 cotwins were interviewed with the anxiety and depression sections of the Diagnostic Interview Schedule (DIS; Robins, Helzer, Croughan, & Ratcliff, 1981). Respondents also completed trait NA and PA scales. Consistent with previous research, NA was broadly correlated with symptoms and diagnoses of both anxiety and depression, and acted as a general predictor of psychiatric disorder. In contrast, PA was consistently related (negatively) only to symptoms and diagnoses of depression, indicating that the loss of pleasurable engagement is a distinctive feature of depression. The results suggest that strengthening the PA component in depression measures may enhance their discriminative power.

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    • "Only a few studies have explored the possible particularities of each diagnosis. Using the Positive and Negative Affect Scale (PANAS), Watson et al. (1988) showed that panic, phobic, and obsessive compulsive symptoms were significantly correlated with negative affect scores but not with positive affects scores. Other results converged to suggest low positive affects in patients with social anxiety disorders even in the absence of a depressive disorder (Kashdan and Breen, 2008). "
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    ABSTRACT: Even though obsessive-compulsive disorders (OCD) and anxiety disorders (AD) have been separated in the taxonomy adopted by the fifth edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, many issues remain concerning the physiopathological similarities and differences between those categories. Our objective was therefore to explore and compare their personality and emotional features, with the assumption that the distinction of two independent spectrums should imply the existence of two partially distinct temperamental profiles. We used the Temperament and Character Inventory (TCI-R) and the Positive and Negative Emotionality (PNE) scale to compare two groups of patients with OCD (n=227) or AD (n=827). The latter group included patients with social anxiety disorder, panic disorder, agoraphobia, and generalized anxiety disorder. Most temperament, character and emotionality measures showed no significant differences between both groups. In the personality measures results, only the self-directedness score (TCI-R) was significantly lower in OCD patients but this difference was not significant when the comparison was adjusted for the depressive scale score and age. Only lower PNE positive affects scores were obtained in OCD patients in the adjusted comparisons. These findings suggest that OCD and AD are not really distinguishable from the point of view of associated personality traits. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.
    08/2015; 229(3):PSYD1400683. DOI:10.1016/j.psychres.2015.08.020
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    • "guilt, shame, disgust/contempt towards oneself). This is in contrast to the most widely employed model of depression that claims an overall increase in negative and reduction in positive emotions (Watson et al., 1988). "
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    ABSTRACT: Cognitive models predict that vulnerability to major depressive disorder (MDD) is due to a bias to blame oneself for failure in a global way resulting in excessive self-blaming emotions, decreased self-worth, hopelessness and depressed mood. Clinical studies comparing the consistency and coherence of these symptoms in order to probe the predictions of the model are lacking. 132 patients with remitted MDD and no relevant lifetime co-morbid axis-I disorders were assessed using a phenomenological psychopathology-based interview (AMDP) including novel items to assess moral emotions (n=94 patients) and the structured clinical interview-I for DSM-IV-TR. Cluster analysis was employed to identify symptom coherence for the most severe episode. Feelings of inadequacy, depressed mood, and hopelessness emerged as the most closely co-occurring and consistent symptoms (≥90% of patients). Self-blaming emotions occurred in most patients (>80%) with self-disgust/contempt being more frequent than guilt, followed by shame. Anger or disgust towards others was experienced by only 26% of patients. 85% of patients reported feelings of inadequacy and self-blaming emotions as the most bothering symptoms compared with 10% being more distressed by negative emotions towards others. Symptom assessment was retrospective, but this is unlikely to have biased patients towards particular emotions relative to others. As predicted, feelings of inadequacy and hopelessness were part of the core depressive syndrome, closely co-occurring with depressed mood. Self-blaming emotions were highly frequent and bothering but not restricted to guilt. This calls for a refined assessment of self-blaming emotions to improve the diagnosis and stratification of MDD. Crown Copyright © 2015. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
    Journal of Affective Disorders 08/2015; 186:JADD1500334. DOI:10.1016/j.jad.2015.08.001 · 3.38 Impact Factor
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    • "Positive mood states are the primary determinant of well-being and their loss are a defining characteristic of MDD (Uher et al., 2012a; Watson et al., 1988; Table 1). Decreased positive mood symptoms include anhedonia, loss of interest, anergia, apathy, inattention, indecisiveness and decreased activity (American Psychiatric Association, 2013; Nierenberg et al., 2012; Watson et al., 1988; Table 1). The burden in domains or clusters of symptoms that map to this dimension of mood are associated with poor treatment outcome (McMakin et al., 2012; Moos and Cronkite, 1999; Nutt et al., 2007; Spijker et al., 2001; Uher et al., 2012a), and may be overrepresented in depressed patients with inadequate response to previous trials of widely used antidepressants (Georgiades et al., 2006; McClintock et al., 2011; Nierenberg et al., 2010). "
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    ABSTRACT: Many patients with major depressive disorder (MDD) only partially respond, and some have no clinically meaningful response, to current widely used antidepressant drugs. Due to the purported role of dopamine in the pathophysiology of depression, triple-reuptake inhibitors (TRIs) that simultaneously inhibit serotonin (5-HT), norepinephrine (NE) and dopamine reuptake could be a useful addition to the armamentarium of treatments for MDD. A TRI should more effectively activate mesolimbic dopamine-related reward-networks, restore positive mood and reduce potent 5-HT reuptake blockade associated "hypodopaminergic" adverse effects of decreased libido, weight gain and "blunting" of emotions. On the other hand, dopaminergic effects raise concern over abuse liability and TRIs may have many of the cardiovascular effects associated with NET inhibition. Several clinical development programs for potential TRI antidepressants have failed to demonstrate significantly greater efficacy than placebo or standard of care. Successful late-stage clinical development of a TRI is more likely if experimental research studies in the target population of depressed patients have demonstrated target engagement that differentially and dose-dependently improves assessments of reward-network dysfunction relative to existing antidepressants. TRI treatment could be individualized on the basis of predictive markers such as the burden of decreased positive mood symptoms and/or neuroimaging evidence of reward network dysfunction. This review focuses on how the next generation of monoamine-based treatments could be efficiently developed to address unmet medical need in MDD.
    Journal of Psychopharmacology 10/2014; 29(5). DOI:10.1177/0269881114553252 · 3.59 Impact Factor
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