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Psych 257 Chap 2 Psych 257 Psychopathology Barlow et Al: Abnormal Psychology 2nd CDN edition Chapter 2

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Uzma Rehman

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An Integrative Approach to Psychopathology
-various components of a multidimensional integrative approach to psychopathology
-Dimensions: Biological, psychological; Influences: emotional, developmental
One Dimensional or Multidimensional Models
-one dimensional: trace origins to single cause; systemic perspective on causality
-hence: any particular influence contributing to psychopathology can’t be out of context
What Caused Jody’s Phobia?
-Behavioural influences:
-Jody; blood phobia; U.R. associated w/ similar situations of U.S.;
-but why didn’t anyone else develop the phobia?
-Biological influences:
-not just conditioning; biological dysfunction (overactive vasovagal reaction) as well
-hence: complex interaction b/w behavioural & biological factors -> increased phobia risk
-Emotional Infuences:
-emotions affect physiological response (eg. BP, HR); emotionally evade blood-related situations
-Social Influences
-social attention, rejection (esp. Authority figures) can increase psychological disorders;
-Developmental Influences
-developmental critical period: more/less reactive to a situation. Eg. Certain ages
Outcome and Comments
-Jody: 7 days gradual exposure to blood + applied muscle tension (lower BP) -> escape phobia
-ability to solve via finding cause of abnormal behaviour & focus on multi-dimensional approach
Genetic Contributions to Psychopathology
-Genes: influence physical characteristics; can also influence behaviour, traits, personality
The Nature of Genes
-23 pairs of chromosomes; provide programs for development of body/brain.
-problems with ordering of base pairs of double helix -> defective gene;
-polygenic: multiple genes influence development,
-hence quantitative genetics: sum up tiny effects across multiple genes
New Developments in the study of Genes and Behaviour
-~1/2 of enduring personality/cognitive ability due to genetics;
- genetics plays a role in all disorders; but: account for <1/2 of explanation
-found: specific/ small set of genes associated w/ certain disorders; disorders are polygenic
-but genetics play a role due to environmental stimulus that triggers genetic vulnerability
The Interaction of genetic and Environmental Effects
-brain/functions are “plastic”; changeable according to environment even to genetic level
-eg. Environment can trigger genes to (turn on)
-the diathesis-stress model
-via polygenetics, inherit tendency to express certain traits/behaviours that activate under stress
-diathesis: condition that makes a person susceptible to developing a disorder
-eg. Caspi et al. People with LL (long) alleles better able to cope with stress than SS(short) allele
-The reciprocal Gene-environment Model
- person with genetic vulnerability may have personality traits that increases odds to experience
the environmental trigger;
-eg. Depression susceptible people may be inclined to seek tough relationships etc.
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