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Life Sciences
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Gautam Ullal

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Suicide February-06-13 2:54 PM Epidemiology - Globally 1 suicideevery 40 seconds - Attempted : completed is about 120:1 - M : F = 1 :4 attempted - M : F = 4:1 completed - The likelyhood of suicide increases with age, peaking at adolescene and the second is at the 45 year old peak Suicide in proginy - Evolutionarily speaking it seems counter-productive to commit suicide, then why? - Since the reproductive value declines with age, evolution may select suicide over survival due to lower progeny Theories of suicide - Dukheim: breakdown of external social controls (something biochemical) which is an external cause - Frued: intrapsychic struggle, unconscious hostility towards the most loved object, 'Self' - Internal cause - Internal cause seems to be the forerunner to biological theories Cause: - The world is not OK, I am not OK, things are not going to be OK Risk factors: - In ranked order 1. Age 2. Alcohol 3. Violent behavior 4. Prior suicide behavior 5. Male 6. Recent seperation 7. Depression 8. Single Endophenotypes - An unseen pathway between the diseaseand genotype - It is used to compare complex behaviors to simplebiological factors for the behavior (like epigenetics and gene expression) - The endophenotype must be a marker of stable trait, be heritable and should correlate with the disease in the general population Endophenotype for suicide 1. Personality: impulsive,aggressive, neuroticism 2. Cognitive traits: Poor decision making, poor executive functions 3. Neurochemistry:catecholaminelevels are lower 4. Neuroimaging:MRI, fMRI, PET (structuraland functionaldefects in parts of the brain) 5. Candidate genes that are linked the NT system Closer look at Neurochemistry of Suicide -
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