Ian Hickie

Ian Hickie
The University of Sydney · Brain and Mind Research Institute (BMRI)

About

1,003
Publications
161,994
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49,973
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Publications

Publications (1,003)
Article
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Purpose: Employment rates for autistic people are low, despite increasing employment-focused programmes. Given the reported complexities for autistic people in finding and keeping work and flourishing there, further exploration is needed to understand how best to help employers accommodate autistic employees. Material and methods: We assessed 88 em...
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There is an increasing interest in using magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) as a tool for precision medicine in autism spectrum disorder (ASD). This study investigated the feasibility of MRI scanning in a large comprehensive, inclusive and test heavy clinical trial for children (aged 3–12 years) with ASD, without functioning constraints for participa...
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Backgroundheadspace centres provide enhanced primary mental healthcare for young people. A priority is to provide services for all young people irrespective of a range of social disadvantages or social exclusion. The aims of this study were to: (i) delineate extent of social inclusion across domains of housing, studying/employment, functioning, alc...
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Background There is increasing evidence that dysregulation of polyunsaturated fatty acids (FAs) mediated membrane function plays a role in the pathophysiology of schizophrenia. Even though preclinical findings have supported the anti-inflammatory properties of omega-3 FAs on brain health, their biological roles as anti-inflammatory agents and their...
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Major depressive disorder (MDD) is associated with an increased risk of brain atrophy, aging-related diseases, and mortality. We examined potential advanced brain aging in adult MDD patients, and whether this process is associated with clinical characteristics in a large multicenter international dataset. We performed a mega-analysis by pooling bra...
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A rate-limiting step in the prevention and early intervention of depressive disorders in young people is our insufficient understanding of causal mechanisms. One plausible pathophysiological pathway is disturbance in the 24 h sleep–wake cycle and the underlying circadian system. Abnormalities in circadian rhythms are well documented in adults with...
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Importance: Genetic studies with broad definitions of depression may not capture genetic risk specific to major depressive disorder (MDD), raising questions about how depression should be operationalized in future genetic studies. Objective: To use a large, well-phenotyped single study of MDD to investigate how different definitions of depressio...
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Objectives Clinician well-being has been recognised as an important pillar of healthcare. However, research mainly addresses mitigating the negative aspects of stress or burnout, rather than enabling positive aspects. With the added strain of a pandemic, identifying how best to maintain and support the well-being, satisfaction and flourishing of ge...
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Introduction Chronic pain and depression are highly comorbid and difficult-to-treat disorders. We previously showed this comorbidity is associated with higher depression severity, lower antidepressant treatment effectiveness and poorer prognosis in the Australian Genetics of Depression Study. Objective The current study aimed to assess whether a g...
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Lay abstract: Many autistic adults have trouble in social situations and at work. Researchers do not know exactly why autistic people might find it difficult in these environments, and no studies to date have looked the way anxiety or other cognitive processes might affect autistic peoples' ability to socialise and succeed in getting and keeping j...
Preprint
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Major depression is one of the most disabling health conditions internationally. In recent years, new generation antidepressant medicines have become very widely prescribed. While these medicines are efficacious, side effects are common and frequently result in discontinuation of treatment. Compared with specific pharmacological properties of the d...
Preprint
Background: Quality Adjusted Life Years (QALYs) are often used in economic evaluations, yet utility weights for deriving them are rarely directly measured in mental health services. Objectives: We aimed to: (i) identify the best Transfer To Utility (TTU) algorithms and predictors for an adolescent specific Multi-Attribute Utility Instrument - the A...
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PurposeHeadspace services provide treatment options to young people seeking mental healthcare. To obtain a better understanding of needs and characteristics of this population, and effectively evaluate services, we require novel youth-specific outcome measures. As part of our broad research program to establish such measures, a sample of young peop...
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Introduction There are no well-established biomedical treatments for the core symptoms of autism spectrum disorder (ASD). A small number of studies suggest that repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS), a non-invasive brain stimulation technique, may improve clinical and cognitive outcomes in ASD. We describe here the protocol for a fund...
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Lay abstract: Research comparing females and males with a diagnosis of autism suggests that there are sex differences in some characteristics such as behaviour regulation. One area not studied in detail is whether females and males with autism perform differently in tests of cognitive ability. The results of previous research are quite mixed. One...
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This paper presents a case study of an innovative direct-to-consumer preclinic triage system designed to reduce predicted peak demand for Australian mental health services as a result of COVID-19 and its associated socioeconomic consequences by guiding Australians to the right mental health care first time. Our innovative, digital health solution c...
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Epigenetic mechanisms have been associated with genes involved in Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). PTSD often co-occurs with other health conditions such as depression, cardiovascular disorder and respiratory illnesses. PTSD and migraine have previously been reported to be symptomatically positively correlated with each other, but little is kn...
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Background Australia’s mental health care system has long been fragmented and under-resourced, with services falling well short of demand. In response, the World Economic Forum has recently called for the rapid deployment of smarter, digitally enhanced health services to facilitate effective care coordination and address issues of demand. The Unive...
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Objectives The heterogeneity and comorbidity of major mental disorders presenting in adolescents and young adults has fostered calls for trans-diagnostic research. This study examines early expressions of psychopathology and risk and trans-diagnostic caseness in a community cohort of twins and non-twin siblings. Methods Using data from the Brisban...
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PurposeMigrant status is one of the most replicated and robust risk factors for developing a psychotic disorder. This study aimed to determine whether migrant status in people identified as Ultra-High Risk for Psychosis (UHR) was associated with risk of transitioning to a full-threshold psychotic disorder.Methods Hazard ratios for the risk of trans...
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Sleep fragmentation and reductions in sleep spindles have been observed in individuals with depression. Sleep spindles are known to play a protective role for sleep, and there are indications that melatonin agents can enhance spindles in healthy people. Whether agomelatine, a melatonin agonist indicated for the treatment of depression, may increase...
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Introduction Approximately 75% of major mental illness occurs before the age of 25 years. Despite this, our capacity to provide effective, early and personalised interventions is limited by insufficient evidence for characterising early-stage, and less specific, presentations of major mental disorders in youth populations. This article describes th...
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Introduction Worsened cardiometabolic profiles in youth with mental ill health have been associated with a number of modifiable lifestyle risk factors. It is becoming increasingly evident that clinical interventions need to be multimodal in focus to improve mental health symptoms and the physical health symptoms in this already at-risk cohort. Met...
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For more than a decade, suicide rates in Australia have shown no improvement despite significant investment in reforms to support regionally driven initiatives. Further recommended reforms by the Productivity Commission call for Federal and State and Territory Government funding for mental health to be pooled and new Regional Commissioning Authorit...
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Improving our understanding of the causes of functional impairment in young people is a major global challenge. Here, we investigated the relationships between self-reported days out of role and the total quantity and different patterns of self-reported somatic, anxious-depressive, psychotic-like, and hypomanic symptoms in a community-based cohort...
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Background The World Economic Forum has recently highlighted substantial problems in mental health service provision and called for the rapid deployment of smarter, digitally-enhanced health services as a means to facilitate effective care coordination and address issues of demand. In mental health, the biggest enabler of digital solutions is the i...
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Background As the global population ages, there is increased interest in developing strategies to promote health and well-being in later life, thus enabling continued productivity, social engagement, and independence. As older adults use technologies with greater frequency, proficiency, and confidence, health information technologies (HITs) now hol...
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Background Out of school hours care (OSHC) services provide a unique opportunity to deliver early intervention programs to enhance primary school–aged children’s social, emotional, physical, and cognitive well-being; however, such programs are currently lacking. Objective This study aims to address the lack of well-being programs for children acce...
Preprint
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Objective: For more than a decade, suicide rates in Australia have shown no improvement despite significant investment in reforms to support regionally driven initiatives. Further recommended reforms by the Productivity Commission call for Federal and State and Territory Government funding for mental health to be pooled and new Regional Commissioni...
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Background Whilst apps and e-tools have tremendous potential as low-cost, scalable mental health intervention and prevention tools, it is essential that consumers and health professionals have a means by which to evaluate their quality and safety. Objective This study aimed to: 1) adapt the original Mobile App Rating Scale (MARS) in order to be ap...
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The bidirectional relationship between depression and chronic pain is well-recognized, but their clinical management remains challenging. Here we characterize the shared risk factors and outcomes for their comorbidity in the Australian Genetics of Depression cohort study (N = 13,839). Participants completed online questionnaires about chronic pain,...
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Background People with neurodegenerative disorders show diverse clinical syndromes, genetic heterogeneity, and distinct brain pathological changes, but studies report overlap between these features. DNA methylation (DNAm) provides a way to explore this overlap and heterogeneity as it is determined by the combined effects of genetic variation and th...
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An ongoing need exists for innovation in service delivery to ensure that mental health services deliver high-quality treatment and prevention in the population. This Special Article proposes the adoption of "staged care" as a population health-oriented service delivery model for packages of specialized services delivered largely in ambulatory care...
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Hippocampal subfield volume loss in older adults with amnestic mild cognitive impairment (aMCI) and depression history are associated with amyloid beta and tau pathology, thereby increasing the risk for Alzheimer’s disease (AD). However, no studies have exclusively examined distinct alterations in hippocampal subfields in non‐amnestic MCI (naMCI) i...
Preprint
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Background History of psychiatric disorders, particularly depression, is the strongest risk factor for perinatal depression (PND). Yet many women without such history experience their first depression episode perinatally, whilst other women with depression history do not experience any episodes during the perinatal period. PND may itself be heterog...
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Background Reducing suicidal behaviour (SB) is a critical public health issue globally. The complex interplay of social determinants, service system factors, population demographics, and behavioural dynamics makes it extraordinarily difficult for decision makers to determine the nature and balance of investments required to have the greatest impact...
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Background The schizophrenia polygenic risk score (SCZ-PRS) is an emerging tool in psychiatry. Aims We aimed to evaluate the utility of SCZ-PRS in a young, transdiagnostic, clinical cohort. Method SCZ-PRSs were calculated for young people who presented to early-intervention youth mental health clinics, including 158 patients of European ancestry,...
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Major mood syndromes are among the most common and disabling mental disorders. However, a lack of clear delineation of their underlying pathophysiological mechanisms is a major barrier to prevention and optimised treatments. Dysfunction of the 24 -h circadian system is a candidate mechanism that has genetic, behavioural, and neurobiological links t...
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Objective Neuroimaging studies of suicidal behavior have so far been conducted in small samples, prone to biases and false-positive associations, yielding inconsistent results. The ENIGMA-MDD working group aims to address the issues of poor replicability and comparability by coordinating harmonized analyses across neuroimaging studies of major depr...
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GABA is the primary inhibitory neurotransmitter in the brain, and is essential to the balance of cortical excitation and inhibition. Reductions in GABA are proposed to result in an overly excitatory cortex that may cause, or contribute to, symptoms of autism spectrum disorder (ASD). This study employed a cross‐sectional design to explore GABA+ diff...
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Risky behaviors, such as substance use and unprotected sex, are associated with various physical and mental health problems. Recent genome-wide association studies indicated that variation in the cell adhesion molecule 2 (CADM2) gene plays a role in risky behaviors and self-control. In this phenome-wide scan for risky behavior, it was tested if und...
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Delineating the association of age and cortical thickness in healthy individuals is critical given the association of cortical thickness with cognition and behavior. Previous research has shown that robust estimates of the association between age and brain morphometry require large-scale studies. In response, we used cross-sectional data from 17,07...
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Delineating the association of age and cortical thickness in healthy individuals is critical given the association of cortical thickness with cognition and behavior. Previous research has shown that robust estimates of the association between age and brain morphometry require large‐scale studies. In response, we used cross‐sectional data from 17,07...
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Background The recent Australian National Agenda for Eating Disorders highlights the role technology can play in improving accessibility and service development through web-based prevention, early access pathways, self-help, and recovery assistance. However, engagement with the eating disorders community to co-design, build, and evaluate these much...
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One hundred and eleven youth with mental ill-health underwent systematic clinical, laboratory and actigraphy monitoring to report associations between 24-h sleep–wake patterns and cardiometabolic risk factors. Multiple linear regression analyses, controlling for medication usage and class, age and sex, found significant associations between: later...
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Age has a major effect on brain volume. However, the normative studies available are constrained by small sample sizes, restricted age coverage and significant methodological variability. These limitations introduce inconsistencies and may obscure or distort the lifespan trajectories of brain morphometry. In response, we capitalized on the resource...
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Full-text available
Age has a major effect on brain volume. However, the normative studies available are constrained by small sample sizes, restricted age coverage and significant methodological variability. These limitations introduce inconsistencies and may obscure or distort the lifespan trajectories of brain morphometry. In response, we capitalized on the resource...
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Full-text available
Background Culturally diverse populations (including Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, people of diverse genders and sexualities, and culturally and linguistically diverse people) in nonurban areas face compounded barriers to accessing mental health care. Health information technologies (HITs) show promising potential to overcome these...
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Background There is a strong research imperative to investigate effective treatment options for adolescents and adults with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Elevated social anxiety, difficulties with social functioning and poor mental health have all been identified as core treatment targets for this group. While theoretical models posit a strong bi...
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Introduction Young people with mental disorders present with diverse social, vocational, physical, and developmental needs. However, multifaceted interventions are rare. We examine the effectiveness of a clinical trial targeting social participation and physical well-being in young people accessing clinical services. Methods The ‘Youth Early-inter...
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Background: Disturbed sleep and irregular sleep-wake patterns have been associated with poor outcomes in older adults. Sleep regularity however has not been studied in a sample with current or remitted major depression. Methods: 138 participants (63.8±8.6 years; n=27 current major depression, n=64 remitted, and n=47 healthy controls) were monitored...
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Background Neurocognitive impairment is recognised as a risk factor for suicidal behaviour in adults. The current study aims to determine whether neurocognitive deficits also predict ongoing or emergent suicidal behaviour in young people with affective disorders. Methods Participants were aged 12-30 years and presented to early intervention youth...
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Background Light therapy yields inconsistent results in people with non-seasonal depression, which may in part be due to heterogeneous responses and the temporal dynamics of changes in sleep, daytime functioning and mood. This study assessed the timeline of the antidepressant effects of light therapy and sleep rescheduling relative to changes in sl...
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Objectives Network analysis is increasingly applied to psychopathology research. We used it to examine the core phenomenology of emerging bipolar disorder (BD I and II) and ‘at risk’ presentations (major depression with a family history of BD). Methodology The study sample comprised a community cohort of 1867 twin and non‐twin siblings (57% female...
Article
The present study investigated differences in white matter (WM) integrity between 96 young people with affective and/or psychotic symptoms classified at an early stage of mental disorder (i.e. ‘attenuated syndrome’; stage 1b), 85 young people classified at a more advanced stage of mental disorder (i.e. ‘discrete disorder’; stage 2), and 81 demograp...
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The ‘16Up’ study conducted at the QIMR Berghofer Medical Research Institute from January 2014 to December 2018 aimed to examine the physical and mental health of young Australian twins aged 16−18 years ( N = 876; 371 twin pairs and 18 triplet sets). Measurements included online questionnaires covering physical and mental health as well as informati...
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Objective: This study aimed to investigate the relationship between obesity and oxidative stress in older adults at risk for dementia. It also aimed to explore the influence of physical activity on the relationship between obesity and oxidative stress in this at risk cohort. Methods: Older adults at risk for dementia underwent comprehensive medi...
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Introduction The acute sickness response to infection is a stereotyped set of illness manifestations initiated by pro-inflammatory signals in the periphery, but mediated centrally. P2X7 is a highly polymorphic gene encoding an ATP-gated cationic pore, widely expressed on immune cells and the brain, and regulating the NLRP3 inflammasome, as well as...
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Background Despite the widely acknowledged potential for health information technologies to improve the accessibility, quality and clinical safety of mental health care, implementation of such technologies in services is frequently unsuccessful due to varying consumer, health professional, and service-level factors. The objective of this co-design...
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Introduction Currently, the literature on personalised and measurement-based mental healthcare is inadequate with major gaps in the development and evaluation of 21st century service models. Clinical presentations of mental ill health in young people are heterogeneous, and clinical and functional outcomes are often suboptimal. Thus, treatments prov...
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Study objectives: Growing evidence demonstrates pronounced alterations in rest-activity functioning in older adults at-risk for dementia. White matter degeneration, poor cardiometabolic functioning and depression have also been linked to greater risk of decline, however limited studies have examined white matter in relation to rest-activity functi...
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Background Worldwide, the population is aging rapidly; therefore, there is a growing interest in strategies to support and maintain health and well-being in later life. Although familiarity with technology and digital literacy are increasing among this group, some older adults still lack confidence in their ability to use web-based technologies. In...