April Hargreaves

April Hargreaves
National College of Ireland

BA, MSc, PhD

About

40
Publications
3,936
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543
Citations
Introduction
April completed her doctorate in neuropsychology and genetics with Trinity College Dublin, where her research focused on the neuropsychological/ cognitive profile of schizophrenia risk variants identified in genome wide association studies. Further research involved assessing the impact of cognitive remediation therapy in patients with psychosis, and more recently, an investigation of the role of CoQ10 in cognition and fatigue for patients with Schizophrenia. Other research interests include 1) dyslexia and 2) attitudes to mental health.
Additional affiliations
September 2015 - present
National College of Ireland
Position
  • Faculty Member
April 2010 - March 2016
Trinity College Dublin
Position
  • Postgraduate fellow

Publications

Publications (40)
Article
Objective COVID-19 forced third-level students to transition to online learning (OL). Many students encountered issues with OL, such as accessibility. However, the relationship between OL issues and mental health during this time remains poorly understood. Participants: Third-level students in Ireland (N = 268) completed an online questionnaire exa...
Article
Abstract Objectives: Lack of knowledge and discriminatory attitudes and behaviours towards individuals with mental disorders is a worldwide problem but may be particularly damaging for young people. This pilot study examined knowledge, attitudes and behaviours towards schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and autism within a large sample of adults in Ire...
Article
Background: Cognitive impairments, negative symptoms, affective symptoms, and low energy are highly prevalent features of schizophrenia. Mitochondrial dysfunction has been hypothesized as one of the numerous factors to underlie the manifestation of these symptoms. The objective of this study was to evaluate whether Coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10) has a role...
Article
Full-text available
Background Coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10) is an endogenous compound that is essential for energy production within the mitochondria and also functions as a potent anti-oxidant, inhibiting oxidative stress and damage. Often deficits in CoQ10 are associated with fatigue, and cognitive and psychological impairment. In light of its many functions, CoQ10 suppleme...
Book
Schizophrenia: Triggers and Treatments is a series of texts that introduces the reader to some of the more recent advances in schizophrenia research. It is concerned with questioning the role of the immune system in the aetiology and course of the disorder, as well as investigating the efficacy of some of the available treatments for schizophrenia....
Article
OBJECTIVE: Mitochondrial dysfunction has been implicated in the pathophysiology of schizophrenia and other neuropsychiatric disorders. Though the exact mechanisms and clinical implications for this dysfunction are not fully determined, there is a hypothesis that deficiency in coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10) may contribute to mitochondrial impairments and be...
Article
Aim: To 1) establish adherence rates to a computerised, low support cognitive remediation (CR) training programme and 2) delineate clinical, cognitive and psychological factors that predict adherence to CR. Method: A total of 48 participants with psychosis were asked to complete eight weeks of CR training following a comprehensive baseline assessme...
Article
Cognitive remediation (CR) training improves cognition and functioning in patients with psychosis. To date, however, few studies have investigated CR from a subjective patient perspective. We recently conducted a randomized control trial demonstrating the effectiveness of a new, low therapist support, computer-based training program. This study aim...
Article
Working memory based cognitive remediation therapy (CT) for psychosis has recently been associated with broad improvements in performance on untrained tasks measuring working memory, episodic memory and IQ, and changes in associated brain regions. However, it is unclear if these improvements transfer to the domain of social cognition and neural act...
Article
Full-text available
Background N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor (NMDAR) encephalitis has prominent early psychotic features. It has been rarely misdiagnosed as schizophrenia. NMDAR encephalitis causes deficiencies in working memory in the short & long term. Early immunotherapy/tumour removal improves outcomes. Schizophrenia can cause significant cognitive performance def...
Article
Full-text available
Background CoQ10 is a vital component of mitochondrial function and metabolism, and its deficiency creates greater vulnerability to disease due to impaired mitochondrial energy generation and cellular antioxidant capacity. CoQ10 functions as an electron carrier within the mitochondrial electron transport chain during cellular respiration. Schizophr...
Article
Full-text available
Background Cognitive remediation (CR) is an effective therapy, shown to improve cognitive performance and functioning in patients with psychosis. We recently conducted a randomised control trial (RCT) demonstrating the effectiveness of a new computer based therapy, conducted with little therapist support. This study aims to assess the subjective ex...
Article
Full-text available
Background Cognitive remediation (CR) training has emerged as a promising approach to improving cognitive deficits in schizophrenia and related psychosis. The limited availability of psychological services for psychosis is a major barrier to accessing this intervention however. This study investigated the effectiveness of a low support, remotely ac...
Article
Background: Deficits in facial emotion recognition have been associated with functional impairments in patients with Schizophrenia (SZ). Whilst a strong ecological argument has been made for the use of both dynamic facial expressions and varied emotion intensities in research, SZ emotion recognition studies to date have primarily used static stimu...
Article
Cognitive remediation (CR) has emerged as the treatment of choice for impaired cognition in psychosis. However, little is known about adherence rates and factors predicting adherence to CR, particularly in clinical settings where high-level therapist support is unavailable. This study aimed to establish adherence rates and examine variables predict...
Article
There is compelling evidence for the role of copy number variants (CNVs) in schizophrenia susceptibility, and it has been estimated that up to 2-3% of schizophrenia cases may carry rare CNVs. Despite evidence that these events are associated with an increased risk across categorical neurodevelopmental disorders, there is limited understanding of th...
Article
Full-text available
Importance: We investigated the variation in neuropsychological function explained by risk alleles at the psychosis susceptibility gene ZNF804A and its interacting partners using single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs), polygenic scores, and epistatic analyses. Of particular importance was the relative contribution of the polygenic score vs epistas...
Article
Bipolar disorder (BD) is a polygenic disorder that shares substantial genetic risk factors with major depressive disorder (MDD). Genetic analyses have reported numerous BD susceptibility genes, while some variants, such as SNPs in CACNA1C have been successfully replicated, many others have not and subsequently their effects on the intermediate phen...
Article
A single nucleotide polymorphism (rs7914558) within the cyclin M2 (CNNM2) gene was recently identified as a common risk variant for schizophrenia. The mechanism by which CNNM2 confers risk is unknown. To determine the impact of the rs7914558 risk 'A' allele on measures of neurocognition, social cognition and brain structure. Patients with schizophr...
Article
Full-text available
Genetic studies of single gene variants have been criticized as providing a simplistic characterization of the genetic basis of illness risk that ignores the effects of other variants within the same biological pathways. Of candidate biological pathways for schizophrenia (SZ), the cell adhesion molecule (CAM) pathway has repeatedly been linked to b...
Article
The single nucleotide polymorphism rs10503253 within the CUB and Sushi multiple domains-1 (CSMD1) gene on 8p23.2 has been identified as genome-wide significant for schizophrenia (SZ). This gene is of unknown function but has been implicated in multiple neurodevelopmental disorders that impact upon cognition, leading us to hypothesize that an effect...
Article
Full-text available
OBJECTIVE The authors investigated the effects of recently identified genome-wide significant schizophrenia genetic risk variants on cognition and brain structure. METHOD A panel of six single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) was selected to represent genome-wide significant loci from three recent genome-wide association studies (GWAS) for schizophr...
Article
Full-text available
Molecular Psychiatry publishes work aimed at elucidating biological mechanisms underlying psychiatric disorders and their treatment
Article
Full-text available
Bipolar disorder (BD) is a polygenic disorder that shares substantial genetic risk factors with major depressive disorder (MDD). Genetic analyses have reported numerous BD susceptibility genes, while some variants, such as single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in CACNA1C have been successfully replicated, many others have not and subsequently thei...
Article
Background: Schizophrenia is accompanied by significant impairment in psychosocial functioning, which is only partially explained by clinical symptom severity. Recently, these impairments have been strongly associated with deficits in neurocognition and social cognition. Although the Global Assessment of Function (GAF) scale remains the most widel...
Article
The single nucleotide polymorphism rs10503253, located within the CUB and Sushi multiple domains-1 (CSMD1) gene on 8p23.2, was recently identified as genome wide significant for schizophrenia, but is of unknown function. We investigated the neurocognitive effects of this CSMD1 variant in vivo in patients and healthy participants using behavioral an...
Article
Donohoe G, Duignan A, Hargreaves A, Morris DW, Rose E, Robertson D, Cummings E, Moore S, Gill M, Corvin A. Social cognition in bipolar disorder versus schizophrenia: comparability in mental state decoding deficits. Bipolar Disord 2012: 14: 743–748. © 2012 The Authors. Journal compilation © 2012 John Wiley & Sons A/S. Objectives: Neuropsychological...
Article
Objective: The Schizophrenia Psychiatric Genome-wide Association (GWAS) Consortium recently reported on five novel schizophrenia susceptibility loci. The most significant finding mapped to a micro-RNA, MIR-137, which may be involved in regulating the function of other schizophrenia and bipolar disorder susceptibility genes. Method: We genotyped...
Article
The Zinc Finger Protein 804A gene (ZNF804A) has been impli- cated as a psychosis/schizophrenia susceptibility gene by several genome wide association studies (Sullivan et al, 2008; O Donovan et al, 2008; Shi et al, 2009; International Schizophrenia Consortium et al, 2009). The identified “A” risk allele at ZNF804A rs1344706 was not associated with...
Article
Classification in psychiatry is heavily dependent on clinical symptoms and illness course. This ignores the critical role that cognitive problems play in neuropsychiatric disorders affecting different domains across the lifespan, from ADHD and autism to schizophrenia and Alzheimers disease. At this point, it is unclear whether cognitive mechanisms...
Article
The advent of genome wide association studies have resulted in the identification of a number of novel genetic loci for schizophrenia and related disorders. Understanding the functional impact of these variants on brain structure and function is crucial to understand their role in disease pathology. We presents data based on our genetic and neurops...
Article
Full-text available
Molecular Psychiatry publishes work aimed at elucidating biological mechanisms underlying psychiatric disorders and their treatment

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Project (1)
Project
To assess the impact of CoQ10 supplementation in patients with schizophrenia on the cognitive measures of attention, memory (especially working memory), IQ and processing speed and on the clinical measures of fatigue, depression, anxiety and blood pressure. We also aim to assess the impact of CoQ10 supplementation on blood plasma CoQ10 and lactate/pyruvate levels so as to measure CoQ10 adherence/absorption and mitochondrial function in these patients.