Alain Brunet

Alain Brunet
McGill University | McGill · Department of Psychiatry

40.58
 · 
PhD
About
166
Research items
25,670
Reads
5,508
Citations
Research Experience
Jun 2000
Douglas Mental Health University Institute
Position
  • Director of the Society and Mental Health Program
Apr 2000 - Nov 2015
McGill University
Position
  • Professor (Associate); Director of the Society and Mental Health Research Program of the Douglas Institute
Education
Aug 1997 - Dec 2000
Aug 1991 - Dec 1997
Université de Montréal
Field of study
  • Psychology
Aug 1989 - Dec 1991
Université de Montréal
Field of study
  • Psychology
Network
Cited By
Followers
Following
Projects
Projects (7)
Project
The goal of this research project is to study the short and long-term effects of disaster-related (2011 Queensland Flood) prenatal maternal stress on birth outcomes and development in childhood.
Research
Research items (166)
Article
The 5-HTTLPR polymorphism of the serotonin transporter has been shown to play a role in autism spectrum disorders (ASD). Moreover, disaster-related prenatal maternal stress (PNMS) has also been shown to be associated with ASD. However, no study to date has examined whether these two factors, either individually or in combination, are predictive of...
Article
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Substantial media attention has focused on suicide among Canadian Public Safety Personnel (PSP; e.g., correctional workers, dispatchers, firefighters, paramedics, police). The attention has raised significant concerns about the mental health impact of public safety service, as well as interest in the correlates for risk of suicide. There have only...
Article
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Objective: The authors assessed the efficacy of trauma memory reactivation performed under the influence of propranolol, a noradrenergic beta-receptor blocker, as a putative reconsolidation blocker, in reducing symptoms of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Method: This was a 6-week, double-blind, placebo-controlled, randomized clinical trial...
Article
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Background: Canadian public safety personnel (PSP; e.g., correctional workers, dispatchers, firefighters, paramedics, police officers) are exposed to potentially traumatic events as a function of their work. Such exposures contribute to the risk of developing clinically significant symptoms related to mental disorders. The current study was design...
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Objective Few studies have examined the effect of risk factor modifications on depression incidence. This study was to explore psychosocial risk factors for depression and quantify the effect of risk factor modifications on depression incidence in a large-scale, longitudinal population-based study. Methods Data were from the Montreal Longitudinal...
Article
Objective: This study examined the effects of disaster-related prenatal maternal stress on infant temperament and whether the sex of the infant or the timing of the stressor in pregnancy would moderate the effects. Methods: Mothers' objective experiences of a sudden-onset flood in Queensland, Australia, their subjective emotional reactions, and...
Article
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Objective: Few longitudinal studies have examined the relationship between trauma exposure and posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) in relation to quality of life or have been designed to consider the relationships between trauma, PTSD diagnosis, and quality of life in terms of both global scores and specific domains. This article aims to provide...
Article
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Research in Brief: In a given year, one in seven victims of violent crime experiences trauma-related symptoms congruent with post-traumatic stress disorders following the victimization. Early detection and assessment of traumatic stress exposure in victims of crime are essential in order to provide the appropriate referral, and consequently reducin...
Article
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Propranolol administered immediately after learning or after recall has been found to impair memory consolidation or reconsolidation (respectively) in animals, but less reliably so in humans. Since reconsolidation impairment has been proposed as a treatment for mental disorders that have at their core an emotional memory, it is desirable to underst...
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The purpose of this study is to assess the psychometric properties of a French version of the Posttraumatic Stress Disorder Checklist for DSM-5 (PCL-5), a self-report measure of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptoms, and to further validate the existing English version of the measure. Undergraduate students (n = 838 English, n = 262 French)...
Article
Research on traumatic stress has focused largely on individual risk factors. A more thorough understanding of risk factors may require investigation of the contribution of neighborhood context, such as the associations between perceived neighbourhood disorder and social cohesion with reported trauma exposure (yes/no) and posttraumatic stress disord...
Article
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Memory reconsolidation impairment using the β-noradrenergic receptor blocker propranolol is a promising novel treatment avenue for patients suffering from pathogenic memories, such as post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). However, in order to better inform targeted treatment development, the effects of this compound on memory need to be better cha...
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Disaster exposure during pregnancy has received limited attention. This study examined the impact of the 2008 Iowa Floods on perinatal maternal depression and well-being, and the role of peritraumatic distress as a possible mechanism explaining this link. Perinatal women (N = 171) completed measures of depressive symptoms and general well-being at...
Poster
Abstract 1: Background: Research on traumatic stress has focused on individual risk factors, but contextual factors, including perceived neighborhood disorder (ND) and social cohesion (SC), may also account for variance in relation to posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). The current study examines associations between these contextual factors and...
Article
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Objective: To estimate the lifetime prevalence of trauma exposure and posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) among a representative, active military sample, and to identify demographic and military variables that modulate rates of trauma exposure as well as PTSD rates and duration. Method: A cross-sectional weighted sample of 5155 regular members...
Article
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Trauma exposure is a precursor to a diagnosis of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). A dearth of empirical evidence exists on the impact of different measurement practices on estimates of trauma exposure and PTSD within representative epidemiological samples. In the present study, we examined differences in reported trauma exposure and rates of P...
Article
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Background: The reconsolidation blocker propranolol abolishes alcohol and drug-seeking behavior in rodents and attenuates conditioned emotional responses to drug-cues in humans in experimental settings. This suggests a role for its use in the treatment of substance dependence. In this translational pilot study, we explored the feasibility and effi...
Article
Individuals with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) exhibit exaggerated emotional reactions to threatening stimuli, which may represent deregulated fear-conditioning, associated with long-term adaptations in the sympathetic nervous system. Within a repeated measures design, functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) was employed to investigate...
Article
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Background: To determine whether disaster-related prenatal maternal stress and maternal illness during pregnancy predict maternal-rated temperament status in six month-old infants. Method: The temperamental status of 121 infants (60 boys and 61 girls) exposed in utero to varying degrees of maternal stress and/or illness during either first (n =...
Article
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Retrospective studies suggest that maternal exposure to a severe stressor during pregnancy increases the fetus' risk for a variety of disorders in adulthood. Animal studies testing the fetal programming hypothesis find that maternal glucocorticoids pass through the placenta and alter fetal brain development, particularly the hypothalamic-pituitary-...
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Prenatal stress can affect lifelong physical growth, including increased obesity risk. However, human studies remain limited. Natural disasters provide models of independent stressors unrelated to confounding maternal characteristics. We assessed degree of objective hardship and subjective distress in women pregnant during severe flooding. At ages...
Article
Prenatal maternal stress (PNMS) predicts psychosocial development in offspring. It has been hypothesized that during PNMS, glucocorticoids pass the placenta, reaching the foetus, leading to a long-term reprogramming and dysregulation of the foetal hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis. However, results are inconsistent across PNMS studies. One...
Article
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We examined the psychometric properties of a quality of life measure, the WHOQOLBREF, in male treatment-seeking veterans. A sample of 131 veterans at an outpatient clinic completed a mail-in survey that included the WHOQOL-BREF as well as measures of posttraumatic stress, depression, anxiety symptoms, and functional health status. The WHOQOL-BREF s...
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To systematically compare specific domains of quality of life and social support as they pertain to the full trauma spectrum of (i) healthy individuals, (ii) those with ongoing post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), (iii) remitted PTSD, or (iv) those who failed to develop PTSD in spite of trauma exposure. Data were from the first wave of a psychiat...
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Background Although the reliable and valid Child Post-Traumatic Stress Reaction Index (CPTS-RI) is a widely used measure of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptoms in children, it has not been validated in French-speaking populations. The present study aims to assess the psychometric properties of the CPTS-RI in three samples of French-speaki...
Article
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This In Review features a primer by Dr Jitender Sareen1 on PTSD and some of its most well-established risk and resilience factors. As noted by Dr Sareen, there is increasing evidence that PTSD is associated with suicidal risk. The second paper in this In Review is a systematic review by Dr Nicola T Fear and colleagues (see Hines et al2) on the PTSD...
Article
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Little is known about how prenatal maternal stress (PNMS) influences risks of asthma in humans. In this small study, we sought to determine whether disaster-related PNMS would predict asthma risk in children. In June 1998, we assessed severity of objective hardship and subjective distress in women pregnant during the January 1998 Quebec Ice Storm....
Article
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Objective: In a previous, double-blind, placebo-controlled study, patients with posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) showed lower physiological response during script-driven traumatic imagery 1 week after receiving a single dose of propranolol given after the retrieval of a traumatic memory. We hypothesized that this effect would extend beyond 1 w...
Article
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Some individuals suffering from posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) exhibit lower basal salivary cortisol and higher glucocorticoid receptor (GR) sensitivity. Recent studies suggest that epigenetic mechanisms regulate the activity of cortisol and GR. As a means to combine and cross-validate those findings, we compared cortisol, GR expression and p...
Article
Evidence suggests that prenatal maternal stress (PNMS) has long-term effects on several outcomes, yet effects on neuromotor function are relatively unknown. We aimed to determine whether disaster-related PNMS predicts motor functioning in young children and whether timing of exposure and sex of the child moderate these effects. Objective and subjec...
Article
Background: Considering the pivotal role of negative emotional experiences in the development and persistence of mental disorders, effectively interfering with the consolidation/reconsolidation of such experiences would open the door to a novel treatment approach in psychiatry.Objective: We assessed the current evidence regarding the capacity of th...
Article
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The mandate of crisis centres varies substantially from one country to the next according to the government policies in effect. In the United States, crisis centres were developed based on Caplan's theory, which defines crisis as a psychosocial disorganization following a life event that is resolved with a return to balance. This approach aims at p...
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Recent evidence suggests that individual psychological debriefing is not effective in prevention of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). This study evaluated the long-term effectiveness of a two-session cognitive-behavioral dyadic secondary prevention intervention for PTSD delivered by a social worker or a nurse at the emergency department of a ho...
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There is a dearth of effective interventions to prevent the development of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). We evaluated the efficacy of a brief dyadic two-session cognitive-behavioral intervention through a controlled trial involving trauma-exposed individuals recruited at the hospital's emergency room. Participants were randomly assigned to...
Poster
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Studies conducted on convenience samples suggest the existence of an inverse relationship for quality of life and trauma exposure/posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). The same has been found for social support. It is unclear if these findings would apply (i) in an epidemiological sample, and (ii) to individuals with a current versus remitted diagn...
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Background With the release of the H1N1 vaccine, there was much controversy surrounding its use despite strong encouragements to be vaccinated in the media. Though studies have examined factors influencing people's decision to be vaccinated, few have focused on how general beliefs about the world or where an individual gathers information might inf...
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Background: Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a severe anxiety disorder whose symptoms include re-experiencing, avoidance, and hyperarousal after a particularly intense event. In view of the aging of the population, increased clinical knowledge is required for better understanding of PTSD in the elderly. Extending previous research in this...
Article
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Background: Considering the pivotal role of negative emotional experiences in the development and persistence of mental disorders, interfering with the consolidation/reconsolidation of such experiences would open the door to a novel treatment approach in psychiatry. We conducted a meta-analysis on the experimental evidence regarding the capacity of...
Article
To prospectively explore the relationship between exposure to potentially distressing news content and disordered eating. Within 2 weeks of the March 3, 2011 Japan earthquake, an online survey was conducted among non-Japanese adults in distant countries (N = 698) assessing time spent on TV and the internet watching the news as well as peritraumatic...
Article
Rationale/statement of the problem : Animal research has challenged the permanency of memory by suggesting that reactivation (retrieval) of a specific memory may return it to a labile state from which it must be “re-consolidated” if it is to persist. Pharmacologically blocking reconsolidation offers the therapeutic possibility of weakening traumati...
Article
Background: Few studies have prospectively examined risk factors for posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) in the aftermath of a traumatic exposure. The aim of this study is to identify the concurrent influence of psychological and biological diatheses on PTSD onset and maintenance, taking into account socio-demographic factors and psychiatric antec...
Article
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BACKGROUND: Decreased cortical thickness in frontal and temporal regions has been observed in individuals suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), compared to healthy controls and trauma-exposed participants without PTSD. In addition, individual differences, both functional and structural, in the anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) have be...
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The FKBP5 gene, a glucocorticoid receptor (GR)-regulating co-chaperone of stress proteins, is of special interest because of its role in hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA)-axis regulation. However, studies finding a genetic relationship between posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and the FKBP5 gene have failed to distinguish between the developm...
Article
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In two recent studies conducted by our group, a treatment combining propranolol with a brief reactivation session subsequently reduced posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptom severity and diagnosis, as well as reducing psychophysiological responses during trauma-related script-driven imagery. One likely explanation for those results is that me...
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To examine how peritraumatic distress modulates the severity of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) according to the timing of the PTSD symptom assessments. A systematic literature review of English- and French-language studies having administered the Peritraumatic Distress Inventory (PDI) was conducted. Meta-analyses were performed on correlation...
Article
Although adult sexual assault has been suggested to be a risk factor for disordered eating, little is known about the pathways leading to this disorder. This study aimed to examine the mediating effect of depressive symptoms and symptoms of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), in the relationship between sexual assault and disordered eating among...
Article
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An adverse environment in utero, including exposure to prenatal maternal stress (PNMS), can result in poor birth outcomes such as low birth weight, which increases risk of later cardiometabolic diseases such as hypertension and obesity. It is unclear to what extent PNMS influences obesity risk independent of its impact on birth characteristics, esp...
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Reviews the book, Memory, war and trauma by Nigel C. Hunt (see record 2010-17048-000). Hunt’s book presents a very different perspective on how memory, war, and trauma interface, drawing upon a variety of sources not frequently accessed by psychologists. He promotes an interdisciplinary approach to studying memory and war; however, rather than draw...