How will the field of psychopathology incorporate the coming avalanche of information generated by these recent advances? The answer will influence not only how mental health professionals diagnose and treat patients but also how the next generation of professionals is trained.
Chapters in this exciting compilation are based on individual talks by 20 international experts at the conceptual forefront of their respective fields given at the March 2003 American Psychopathological Association annual meeting. Organized into four main sections -- the future of psychiatric genetics, diagnosis and prevention of psychiatric disorders, neurobiology and psychiatric disorders, and the future of psychiatric education -- Psychopathology in the Genome and Neuroscience Era focuses on a broad range of topics: The importance of a conceptual shift from identifying major genes for mental disorders to gaining an understanding of the role of which genes in which contexts, both biological and environmental, confer susceptibility to or protection from mental disorders or components thereof Historical perspective of gene susceptibility to mental disorders, with the same possibilities for use and misuse of genotype data as now exist for significantly heritable traits such as intelligence, and for borderline traits such as criminal behavior and alcoholism Reconceptualization of medicine and medical diagnoses to include molecular genetic components, including the importance of cell loss and neurogenesis in mood disorders Major phenotypic problems inherent in all attempts to measure psychopathology, starting with how to achieve reliability, and how to advance from reliability to validity in future revisions of DSM and ICD classifications Brain structural abnormalities in mood disorders; physiological cell death and whether or not this natural phenomenon can be converted into a pathological process, including the importance of cell loss and neurogenesis in mood disorders The influence of scientific advances, workforce issues, and educational trends on psychiatric training
Psychopathology in the Genome and Neuroscience Era is a must-read reference work for anyone -- practitioners, residents, and students alike -- interested in the future of psychiatric genetics, epidemiology, and education.