PMCCPMCCPMCC

Search tips
Search criteria 

Advanced

 
Logo of jnnpsycJournal of Neurology, Neurosurgery and PsychiatryVisit this articleSubmit a manuscriptReceive email alertsContact usBMJ
 
J Neurol Neurosurg Psychiatry. 1997 July; 63(1): 74–82.
PMCID: PMC2169625

Abnormal response to negative feedback in unipolar depression: evidence for a diagnosis specific impairment

Abstract

OBJECTIVES—To assess in further detail the specific form of motivational impairment influencing neuropsychological performance in depression—oversensitivity to perceived failure. The present study considers two questions: firstly whether this is specific to depression and secondly how the effect relates to clinical features.
METHODS—Unipolar depressed patients and matched controls were assessed on two neuropsychological tests giving explicit performance feedback. The data were analysed in two separate studies to consider the questions above. The first study considered the specificity of the effect to depressed patients, using data on the same tests collected from other patient groups. The second study was a longitudinal assessment of the depressed patients on clinical recovery to determine whether the effect is specific to the depressed state.
RESULTS—The effect was not seen in non-depressed patient groups, either neurological or psychiatric groups. The longitudinal study showed a residual abnormal response to negative feedback on clinical recovery.
CONCLUSIONS—Abnormal response to negative feedback is specific to a primary diagnosis of depression and may be a trait rather than a state factor of the disorder. These results are discussed in relation to the putative neuropathology of depression and also to cognitive and behavioural accounts of the disorder. The findings presented here have important implications for establishing a link between mood and cognition in unipolar depression.

Full Text

The Full Text of this article is available as a PDF (149K).

Selected References

These references are in PubMed. This may not be the complete list of references from this article.
  • Elliott R, Sahakian BJ, McKay AP, Herrod JJ, Robbins TW, Paykel ES. Neuropsychological impairments in unipolar depression: the influence of perceived failure on subsequent performance. Psychol Med. 1996 Sep;26(5):975–989. [PubMed]
  • Austin MP, Ross M, Murray C, O'Carroll RE, Ebmeier KP, Goodwin GM. Cognitive function in major depression. J Affect Disord. 1992 May;25(1):21–29. [PubMed]
  • Beats BC, Sahakian BJ, Levy R. Cognitive performance in tests sensitive to frontal lobe dysfunction in the elderly depressed. Psychol Med. 1996 May;26(3):591–603. [PubMed]
  • Miller WR. Psychological deficit in depression. Psychol Bull. 1975 Mar;82(2):238–260. [PubMed]
  • Weingartner H, Cohen RM, Murphy DL, Martello J, Gerdt C. Cognitive processes in depression. Arch Gen Psychiatry. 1981 Jan;38(1):42–47. [PubMed]
  • Schmand B, Kuipers T, Van der Gaag M, Bosveld J, Bulthuis F, Jellema M. Cognitive disorders and negative symptoms as correlates of motivational deficits in psychotic patients. Psychol Med. 1994 Nov;24(4):869–884. [PubMed]
  • Richards PM, Ruff RM. Motivational effects on neuropsychological functioning: comparison of depressed versus nondepressed individuals. J Consult Clin Psychol. 1989 Jun;57(3):396–402. [PubMed]
  • Hughes JR, Pleasants CN, Pickens RW. Measurement of reinforcement in depression: a pilot study. J Behav Ther Exp Psychiatry. 1985 Sep;16(3):231–236. [PubMed]
  • Wener AE, Rehm LP. Depressive affect: a test of behavioral hypotheses. J Abnorm Psychol. 1975 Jun;84(3):221–227. [PubMed]
  • Owen AM, Downes JJ, Sahakian BJ, Polkey CE, Robbins TW. Planning and spatial working memory following frontal lobe lesions in man. Neuropsychologia. 1990;28(10):1021–1034. [PubMed]
  • Robbins TW, James M, Lange KW, Owen AM, Quinn NP, Marsden CD. Cognitive performance in multiple system atrophy. Brain. 1992 Feb;115(Pt 1):271–291. [PubMed]
  • Sahakian BJ, Morris RG, Evenden JL, Heald A, Levy R, Philpot M, Robbins TW. A comparative study of visuospatial memory and learning in Alzheimer-type dementia and Parkinson's disease. Brain. 1988 Jun;111(Pt 3):695–718. [PubMed]
  • Robbins TW, James M, Owen AM, Sahakian BJ, McInnes L, Rabbitt P. Cambridge Neuropsychological Test Automated Battery (CANTAB): a factor analytic study of a large sample of normal elderly volunteers. Dementia. 1994 Sep-Oct;5(5):266–281. [PubMed]
  • Owen AM, Sahakian BJ, Semple J, Polkey CE, Robbins TW. Visuo-spatial short-term recognition memory and learning after temporal lobe excisions, frontal lobe excisions or amygdalo-hippocampectomy in man. Neuropsychologia. 1995 Jan;33(1):1–24. [PubMed]
  • Baker SC, Rogers RD, Owen AM, Frith CD, Dolan RJ, Frackowiak RS, Robbins TW. Neural systems engaged by planning: a PET study of the Tower of London task. Neuropsychologia. 1996 Jun;34(6):515–526. [PubMed]
  • Owen AM, Roberts AC, Hodges JR, Summers BA, Polkey CE, Robbins TW. Contrasting mechanisms of impaired attentional set-shifting in patients with frontal lobe damage or Parkinson's disease. Brain. 1993 Oct;116(Pt 5):1159–1175. [PubMed]
  • Cummings JL. Subcortical dementia. Neuropsychology, neuropsychiatry, and pathophysiology. Br J Psychiatry. 1986 Dec;149:682–697. [PubMed]
  • Drevets WC, Videen TO, Price JL, Preskorn SH, Carmichael ST, Raichle ME. A functional anatomical study of unipolar depression. J Neurosci. 1992 Sep;12(9):3628–3641. [PubMed]
  • Robbins TW. The case of frontostriatal dysfunction in schizophrenia. Schizophr Bull. 1990;16(3):391–402. [PubMed]
  • Crow TJ. Temporal lobe asymmetries as the key to the etiology of schizophrenia. Schizophr Bull. 1990;16(3):433–443. [PubMed]
  • HAMILTON M. A rating scale for depression. J Neurol Neurosurg Psychiatry. 1960 Feb;23:56–62. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
  • Montgomery SA, Asberg M. A new depression scale designed to be sensitive to change. Br J Psychiatry. 1979 Apr;134:382–389. [PubMed]
  • Teasdale JD, Dent J. Cognitive vulnerability to depression: an investigation of two hypotheses. Br J Clin Psychol. 1987 May;26(Pt 2):113–126. [PubMed]
  • Rogers D, Lees AJ, Smith E, Trimble M, Stern GM. Bradyphrenia in Parkinson's disease and psychomotor retardation in depressive illness. An experimental study. Brain. 1987 Jun;110(Pt 3):761–776. [PubMed]
  • Starkstein SE, Preziosi TJ, Berthier ML, Bolduc PL, Mayberg HS, Robinson RG. Depression and cognitive impairment in Parkinson's disease. Brain. 1989 Oct;112(Pt 5):1141–1153. [PubMed]
  • Taylor AE, Saint-Cyr JA, Lang AE, Kenny FT. Parkinson's disease and depression. A critical re-evaluation. Brain. 1986 Apr;109(Pt 2):279–292. [PubMed]
  • Zubenko GS, Moossy J, Kopp U. Neurochemical correlates of major depression in primary dementia. Arch Neurol. 1990 Feb;47(2):209–214. [PubMed]
  • Vaughn CE, Leff JP. The influence of family and social factors on the course of psychiatric illness. A comparison of schizophrenic and depressed neurotic patients. Br J Psychiatry. 1976 Aug;129:125–137. [PubMed]

Articles from Journal of Neurology, Neurosurgery, and Psychiatry are provided here courtesy of BMJ Group