Roland Mergl

Roland Mergl
Universität der Bundeswehr München · Fakultät für Humanwissenschaften

About

188
Publications
34,195
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5,939
Citations
Citations since 2016
35 Research Items
3426 Citations
20162017201820192020202120220100200300400500600
20162017201820192020202120220100200300400500600
20162017201820192020202120220100200300400500600
20162017201820192020202120220100200300400500600

Publications

Publications (188)
Article
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Background: Women who have had miscarriages or stillbirths are known to have a high risk for enduring grief. However, the course and frequency of enduring grief in this subgroup are not fully understood. Objective: Our aims were to assess the intensity of grief and its course in women with miscarriages or stillbirths and to estimate the frequency o...
Article
EEG neurofeedback (EEG-NFB) is a promising tool for the treatment of depressive disorders. However, many methods for the presentation of neurobiological reactions are available and it is widely unknown which of these feedback options are preferrable. Moreover, the influence of motivation on NFB training success is insufficiently studied. This study...
Article
Background: A four-level community-based intervention aiming simultaneously to improve the care for depression and to prevent suicidal behavior has been implemented in the German city Munich. Aims: Changes in suicide rates in Munich during 2009-2014 were analyzed with respect to a 10-year baseline. The same was true for a control region (Cologne) a...
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Background Ghrelin and the adipokines leptin and adiponectin have been suggested to be involved in mood and anxiety regulation and to be altered in affective disorders. However, studies investigating the association between ghrelin, leptin and adiponectin and depressive symptomatology are scarce but might contribute to a better understanding of the...
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Unemployed people could be at risk of developing inefficient sleep habits by spending excessive time in bed, as they lack a structuring activity. This could impact their mental health and reintegration into labour. This study aims to analyse possible associations between employment status and sleep parameters using actigraphy. Subjects (148 employe...
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Background: Depression stigma is a clinically relevant factor negatively affecting the help-seeking process and depression care. Relatives of individuals suffering from depression play an important role in service utilization and in depression treatment, but little is known about their depression stigma compared to the stigma of individuals affecte...
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Supported by the German Alliance Against Depression, 82 regions in Germany launched their own community-based multi-level intervention programs targeting both depression and suicidal behavior prior to January 2016. Sixteen of these regions have implemented the full 4-level intervention program comprising 1) training of General Practitioners, 2) a p...
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Depression and vitamin D deficiency are major public health problems. The existing literature indicates the complex relationship between depression and vitamin D. The purpose of this study was to examine whether this relationship is moderated or mediated by inflammation. A community sample (n = 7162) from the LIFE-Adult-Study was investigated, for...
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Purpose: Ghrelin is an orexigenic peptide hormone secreted in times of stress and hunger. It is deeply involved in the regulation of metabolism and energy homeostasis, promoting energy intake and inhibiting energy expenditure on a metabolic level. In this regard, it has in many ways antagonistic effect on the thyroid hormones, which increase metabo...
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Background Sleep disorders and vitamin D deficiency are highly prevalent health problems. Few studies examined the effect of vitamin D concentrations on objectively measured sleep with high methodological quality and temporal proximity. Previous analysis within the LIFE-Adult-Study suggested that a lower concentration of serum vitamin D was associa...
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Background: Motor function is deficient in many patients with obsessive–compulsive disorder (OCD), especially in the face. To investigate subtle motor dysfunction, kinematical analysis of emotional facial expressions can be used. Our aim was to investigate facial movements in response to humorous film stimuli in OCD patients.; Method: Kinematical a...
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Background Cytokines are mediators of inflammation that contribute to a low-grade inflammation in different disorders like major depression and obesity. It still remains unclear which psychological and medical factors interact with cytokine regulation. In the current investigation, the association between levels of pro-and anti-inflammatory cytokin...
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The ‘European Alliance Against Depression’ community-based intervention approach simultaneously targets depression and suicidal behaviour by a multifaceted community based intervention and has been implemented in more than 115 regions worldwide. The two main aims of the European Union funded project “Optimizing Suicide Prevention Programmes and The...
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Background: Crisis hotlines play a key role in suicide prevention worldwide following different approaches regarding risk assessment and management of suicidality. This is to our knowledge the first study investigating depression stigma in crisis hotline counselors. The association between stigma and self-rated knowledge and their exploration of s...
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Objectives: Ghrelin, an orexigenic peptide hormone, promotes drug reward and is suspected to play a role in nicotine dependence. However, there is little data on whether ghrelin levels are associated with active and/or former smoking. The relationship between ghrelin serum levels and smoking status in a population based sample of individuals was st...
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Background: Sleep disorders and vitamin D deficiency are among the most common health problems. Few studies investigated the effect of vitamin D on objectively recorded sleep with sound methodological quality and reasonable temporal proximity. Objective: To investigate the relationship between serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D (25(OH)D) concentrations a...
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Background: The personality trait neuroticism has been implicated in a poor response to stress, may relate to increased concentrations of cytokines and the development of depression. Inflammatory mechanisms may also be associated with the onset, severity and symptoms of depression. Both are related to poor antidepressant treatment outcome. Therefor...
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Background A series of studies indicate that a fast onset of a depressive episode (within 7 days) is a clinical variable useful for indicating bipolarity even when no manic episode has occurred to date. The role of acute critical life events as an external trigger for a fast onset of the depression is unclear so far. Therefore, aim of this investig...
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Depressed patients frequently exhibit a hyperstable brain arousal regulation. According to the arousal regulation model of affective disorders, the antidepressant effect of therapeutic sleep deprivation could be achieved by counter-acting this dysregulation. We investigated the impact of partial sleep deprivation (PSD) on EEG-vigilance (an indicato...
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Purpose: Obesity and depression have both been shown to be associated with reduced physical activity (PA). However, most studies have not applied objective measures to determine PA in patients. Moreover, to our knowledge, no studies are available comparing depressed and non-depressed patients with regard to PA. Methods: We investigated PA in 47...
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Background: The long-term course of symptoms in patients with mild-to-moderate depression is not well understood. A 12-month-follow-up analysis was performed on those participants from a randomized controlled 10-week trial (RCT, MIND-study), who had received either treatment with an antidepressant (sertraline) or a psychotherapeutic intervention (...
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Suicide rates in Germany consistently decreased from 1991 to 2006, but this trend was reversed in 2007. Underlying this reversal were large increases in suicides due to gassing in females and in being overrun in males. During a similar time period (2005–2013), Asian and some Western countries have also observed abrupt increases in suicides due to c...
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Based on many clinical and preclinical findings the 'vigilance regulation model of mania' postulates that an unstable regulation of wakefulness is a pathogenetic factor in both mania and Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) and induces hyperactivity and sensation seeking as an autoregulatory attempt to stabilize wakefulness. Accordingly,...
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Background Simultaneous downregulation of the autonomic and central nervous system activity enables the gradual physiological state change from wakefulness to sleep onset. Dysregulation of central or autonomic arousal has been found in neurological (Silvani et al., 2016) and psychiatric disorders (Hegerl and Hensch, 2014; Hegerl et al., 2012; Schul...
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Maintaining temporal coordination across physiological systems is crucial at the wake-sleep transition. As shown in recent studies, the degree of coordination between brain and autonomic arousal influences attention, which highlights a previously unrecognised point of potential failure in the attention system. To investigate how cortical and autono...
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Background Suicide accounts for over 58,000 deaths in Europe per annum, where suicide attempts are estimated to be 20 times higher. Males have been found to have a disproportionately lower rate of suicide attempts and an excessively higher rate of suicides compared to females. The gender difference in suicide intent is postulated to contribute towa...
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A tonically high level of brain arousal and its hyperstable regulation is supposed to be a pathogenic factor in major depression. Preclinical studies indicate that most antidepressants may counteract this dysregulation. Therefore, it was hypothesized that responders to antidepressants show a) a high level of EEG-vigilance (an indicator of brain aro...
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Background: The influence of baseline severity has been examined for antidepressant medications but has not been studied properly for cognitive-behavioural therapy (CBT) in comparison with pill placebo. Aims: To synthesise evidence regarding the influence of initial severity on efficacy of CBT from all randomised controlled trials (RCTs) in whic...
Article
Ziel der Studie: Erfassung des Zeitraums zwischen Auftreten erster Symptome und Inanspruchnahme einer Behandlung und Rolle der Stigmatisierung Methodik: Befragung auf dem 2. Deutschen Patientenkongress Depression. Ergebnisse: Bei zwei Drittel der Betroffenen vergingen mehr als 3 Monate, bei etwa einem Viertel mehr als 3 Jahre zwischen Auftreten ers...
Article
Objectives: Although patients with depression often suffer from sleep disturbances, most of them are not sleepy. Upregulation of brain arousal has been proposed as pathophysiological mechanism explaining sleep disturbances, inner tension, autonomic hyperarousal and anhedonia in depression. The aim of the current study was to examine the associatio...
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Objective: Although the average depressed patient benefits moderately from cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) or pharmacotherapy, some experience divergent outcomes. The authors tested frequencies, predictors, and moderators of negative and unusually positive outcomes. Method: Sixteen randomized clinical trials comparing CBT and pharmacotherapy...
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Importance: Current guidelines recommend treating severe depression with pharmacotherapy. Randomized clinical trials as well as traditional meta-analyses have considerable limitations in testing for moderators of treatment outcomes. Objectives: To conduct a systematic literature search, collect primary data from trials, and analyze baseline depr...
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Randomized trials with antidepressants are often run under double blind placebo-controlled conditions, whereas those with psychotherapies are mostly unblinded. This can introduce bias in favor of psychotherapy when the treatments are directly compared. In this meta-analysis, we examine this potential source of bias. We searched Pubmed, PsycInfo, Em...
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In patients with affective disorders, the full-blown symptomatology of a depressive episode can develop very fast (eg, within 1 d) or slowly over weeks or months. These differences in the speed of onset of depression are likely to reflect stable intraindividual differences in neurobiological pathomechanisms. This article presents available data on...
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After the railway suicide of the German national goalkeeper Robert Enke in 2009, a significant increase of railway suicides was observed nationally. This study analyses whether this incident also triggered copycat effects in other European countries. Additionally, media coverage proxied by Google Trends and long-term changes taking into account gen...
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Background: In Europe, men have lower rates of attempted suicide compared to women and at the same time a higher rate of completed suicides, indicating major gender differences in lethality of suicidal behaviour. The aim of this study was to analyse the extent to which these gender differences in lethality can be explained by factors such as choic...
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Chronic systemic inflammation in obesity originates from local immune responses in visceral adipose tissue. However, assessment of a broad range of inflammation-mediating cytokines and their relationship to physical activity and adipometrics has scarcely been reported to date. To characterize the profile of a broad range of pro- and anti-inflammato...
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The "Onset of Depression Inventory" (ODI) represents a patient interview which aims to register the speed of onset of depression systematically. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the patient-relative agreement regarding the speed of onset of depression in the patients. The ODI was investigated in 31 patients with a depressive episode. Moreo...
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Objectives. Alterations in neuronal and glial integrity are considered to be of pathogenic impact on major depressive disorder (MDD). For MDD, data on cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) levels of neuron-specific enolase (NSE) are lacking and scarce for glial protein S100B. Methods. We measured CSF levels of NSE and S100B in 31 patients with MDD and 32 menta...
Article
The use of Internet has grown in the past number of years, including the increased application of various therapy programs for psychiatric patients which can be accessed online. Few studies investigating psychiatric patients’ Internet use exist. Therefore, the aim of this study was to examine the number of psychiatric patients that use the Internet...
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Background: It has yet to be established whether gender moderates or predicts outcome of psychological and pharmacological treatments for adult depression because: (1) individual randomized trials typically lack sufficient statistical power to detect moderators and predictors and (2) meta-analyses cannot examine such associations directly. Method...
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Lithium is an important psychopharmacological agent for the treatment of unipolar as well as bipolar affective disorders. Lithium has a number of side effects such as hypothyroidism and aggravation of psoriasis. On the other hand, lithium has pro-inflammatory effects, which appear beneficial in some disorders associated with immunological deficits,...
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Background: Depressive episodes show large interindividual differences concerning their speed of onset and speed of recovery, which might suggest differences in underlying pathophysiological processes. The aim of the present study was to assess whether there is a relationship between the speed of onset and the speed of recovery from depressive epi...
Article
Personal and perceived depression stigma was assessed with Griffiths and colleagues׳ Depression Stigma Scale in 1509 German adults. The sample comprised three groups of participants: attendees of a depression congress, job placement officers and a representative general population sample. In all groups, personal stigma was lower than perceived stig...
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Background The neuropeptide S receptor (NPSR1) and its ligand neuropeptide S (NPS) have received increased attention in the last few years, as both establish a previously unknown system of neuromodulation. Animal research studies have suggested that NPS may be involved in arousal/wakefulness and may also have a crucial role in sleep regulation. The...
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Both depression and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) are prevalent, severe and often comorbid disorders. There is a risk of undertreatment for depression in patients with COPD as depressive symptoms, including suicidal tendencies, can erroneously be conceptualised as an understandable reaction to COPD and not as signs of an independent...
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Increased cytokine production possibly due to oxidative stress has repeatedly been shown to play a pivotal role in the pathophysiology of epilepsy and bipolar disorder. Recent in vitro and animal studies of valproic acid (VPA) report antioxidative and anti-inflammatory properties, and suppression of interleukin (IL)-6 and tumor necrosis factor (TNF...
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The interplay between immune and nervous systems plays a pivotal role in the pathophysiology of depression. In depressive episodes, patients show increased production of pro-inflammatory cytokines such as interleukin (IL)-1β and tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-α. There is limited information on the effect of antidepressant drugs on cytokines, most stud...
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The suicide rate in Hungary is high in international comparison. The two-year community-based four-level intervention programme of the European Alliance Against Depression (EAAD) is designed to improve the care of depression and to prevent suicidal behaviour. Our aim was to evaluate the effectiveness of a regional community-based four-level suicide...
Article
Changes within the immune system have been reported to contribute to the pathophysiology of bipolar disorder and epilepsy. Interestingly, overlapping results regarding the cytokine system have been found for both diseases, namely alterations of interleukins IL-1β, IL-2, IL-4, IL-6, and tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α). However, the effect of mood st...
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Whereas German suicide rates had a clear decreasing tendency between 1991 and 2006, they increased from 2007 to 2010. Deeper analyses of suicide data might help to understand better this change. The aim of this study was to analyze 1) whether recent trends can be related to changes in specific suicide methods and diverge by gender and age; 2) wheth...
Data
Age-group specific changes in age-adjusted mortality rates for four suicide methods (annual percentage change > = 1) in males and females between 2007 and 2010 in Germany. (DOC)