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1.  Time to lack of persistence with pharmacological treatment among patients with current depressive episodes: a natural study with 1-year follow-up 
Patient preference and adherence  2016;10:2209-2215.
Medication nonadherence remains a big challenge for depressive patients. This study aims to assess and compare the medication persistence between unipolar depression (UD) and bipolar depression (BD).
A total of 146 UD and 187 BD patients were recruited at their first index prescription. Time to lack of persistence with pharmacological treatment (defined as a gap of at least 60 days without taking any medication) was calculated, and clinical characteristics were collected. Final diagnosis was made at the end of 1-year follow-up.
A total of 101 (69.2%) UD and 126 (67.4%) BD patients discontinued the treatment, with a median duration of 36 days and 27 days, respectively. No significant difference was found between UD and BD in terms of time to lack of persistence with pharmacological treatment. The highest discontinuation rate (>40%) occurred in the first 3 months for both groups of patients. For UD patients, those with a higher risk of suicide (odds ratio [OR] =0.696, P=0.035) or comorbidity of any anxiety disorder (OR =0.159, P<0.001) were less likely to prematurely drop out (drop out within the first 3 months), while those with onset in the summer (OR =4.702, P=0.049) or autumn (OR =7.690, P=0.012) were more likely to prematurely drop out than those with onset in the spring (OR =0.159, P<0.001). For BD patients, being female (OR =2.250, P=0.012) and having a history of spontaneous remission or switch to hypomania (OR =2.470, P=0.004) were risk factors for premature drop out, while hospitalization (OR =0.304, P=0.023) and misdiagnosis as UD (OR =0.283, P<0.001) at the first index prescription were protective factors.
Conservative definition of nonadherence, low representativeness of sample.
Treatment discontinuation was frequently seen in patients with UD or BD, especially in the first 3 months of treatment. In spite of the similar pattern of medication persistence, UD and BD differ from each other in predictors of premature drop out.
PMCID: PMC5096725  PMID: 27822021
medication adherence; unipolar depression; bipolar depression
2.  Brief behavioral treatment for patients with treatment-resistant insomnia 
To evaluate the efficacy of brief behavioral treatment for insomnia (BBTI) in treating patients with treatment-resistant insomnia.
Seventy-nine adults with treatment-resistant insomnia were randomly assigned to receive either individualized BBTI (delivered in two in-person sessions and two telephone “booster” sessions, n=40) or sleep hygiene education (n=39). The primary outcome was subjective (sleep diary) measures of self-report symptoms and questionnaire measures of Pittsburgh sleep quality index (PSQI), insomnia severity index (ISI), Epworth sleeping scale (ESS), and dysfunctional beliefs and attitudes about sleep scale (DBAS).
The repeated-measures analysis of variance showed significant time effects between pretreatment and posttreatment in the scale ratings of PSQI, ESS, DBAS, ISI, sleep latency (SL), time in bed (TIB), sleep efficiency (SE), and wake after sleep onset (WASO) in both groups and group × time interaction (FPSQI =3.893, FESS =4.500, FDBAS =5.530, FISI =15.070, FSL =8.909, FTIB =7.895, FSE =2.926, and FWASO =2.595). The results indicated significant differences between BBTI and sleep hygiene in change scores of PSQI, ESS, DBAS, ISI, SL, TIB, SE, and WASO. Effect sizes were moderate to large.
BBTI is a simple and efficacious intervention for chronic insomnia in adults.
PMCID: PMC4977084  PMID: 27536119
brief behavioral treatment; treatment-resistant; insomnia
3.  Efficacy of physical activity counseling plus sleep restriction therapy on the patients with chronic insomnia 
Lack of physical activity (PA) is common in patients with chronic insomnia. Studies to increase PA and decrease sedentary behavior in those patients are limited. Therefore, we investigated the efficacy of “PA counseling combined with sleep restriction (SR) therapy (PASR)” vs only SR in the patients with chronic insomnia.
Seventy-one outpatients were assigned to either PASR (n=35), consisting of four weekly PA counseling sessions based on 5A model (assess, advise, agree, assist, and arrange) + SR, or SR (n=36), consisting of four weekly SR. International Physical Activity Questionnaire (Chinese version) and pedometer-based daily steps were evaluated as the primary endpoints. Insomnia Severity Index, Epworth Sleepiness Scale, Fatigue Scale-14, and Sleep Diary were evaluated as the secondary endpoints.
The results showed that the patients in the PASR group gained more benefits than the SR group in terms of PA level and pedometer-based daily steps (all P<0.05). Better improvements of the study group were also shown in Epworth Sleepiness Scale, Fatigue Scale-14, and Sleep efficiency (all P<0.05).
We conclude that PA counseling based on 5A model combined with SR cannot only effectively increase the PA levels but also improve the sleep quality for patients with chronic insomnia.
PMCID: PMC4627398  PMID: 26566369
behavioral therapy; physical activity; sleep disorders; sleep restriction; counseling
4.  No association of ZNF804A rs1344706 with white matter integrity in schizophrenia: A tract-based spatial statistics study 
Neuroscience letters  2012;532:64-69.
Altered brain connectivity has been widely considered as a genetic risk mechanism for schizophrenia. Of the many susceptibility genes identified so far, ZNF804A (rs1344706) is the first common genetic variant associated with schizophrenia on a genome-wide level. Previous fMRI studies have found that carriers of rs1344706 exhibit altered functional connectivity. However, the relationship between ZNF804A and white matter structural connectivity in patients of schizophrenia remains unknown. In this study, 100 patients with schizophrenia and 69 healthy controls were genotyped at the single nucleotide polymorphism rs1344706. Diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) was conducted and analyzed with tract-based spatial statistics. Systematic statistical analysis was conducted on multiple diffusion indices, including fractional anisotropy, axial diffusivity, radial diffusivity, and mean diffusivity. Unpaired two-sample t-test revealed significant differences in fractional anisotropy and diffusivity between schizophrenia and control groups. A two-way ANOVA analysis was conducted to assess the main effects of and the interaction between schizophrenia and ZNF804A. Although significant main effects of the diagnosis of schizophrenia were found on radial diffusivity, no association between the ZNF804A (rs1344706) and white matter connectivity was found in the entire group of subjects or in a selected subgroup of age-matched subjects (n = 72).
PMCID: PMC4154480  PMID: 23147122
ZNF804A; Schizophrenia; White matter; Diffusion tensor imaging (DTI); Tract-based spatial statistics (TBSS)
5.  Cost-effectiveness analysis of psychosocial intervention for early stage schizophrenia in China: a randomized, one-year study 
BMC Psychiatry  2014;14:212.
A combination of psychosocial interventions and medications has been highly recommended as a successful treatment package for schizophrenia. Its cost-effectiveness has not been fully explored yet. The aim of the present analysis was to evaluate the cost-effectiveness of antipsychotics combined with psychosocial treatment and treatment as usual for patients with early-stage schizophrenia.
Patients with schizophrenia (N = 1, 268) were assigned to the combination of medication and psychosocial intervention or treatment as usual for up to 12 months. Cost analysis included direct medical costs, direct nonmedical costs and indirect costs. Quality-adjusted life year (QALY) ratings were assessed with Short- Form 6D.
Average monthly psychosocial intervention costs for combined treatment were higher than treatment as usual (p = 0.005), but no significant differences were found in direct costs, indirect costs, and total costs between two groups (all p-values ≥ 0.556). Combined treatment was associated with significant higher QALY ratings than treatment as usual (p = 0.039). Compared with treatment as usual, combined treatment resulted in a gain of 0.031 QALY ratings at an additional cost of US$ 56.4, yielding an incremental cost-effectiveness ratio of US$ 1819.4 per QALY gained.
Despite some limitations, our results supported that medication combined with psychosocial treatment was more cost-effective than treatment as usual for patients with early-stage schizophrenia.
Trial registration Identifier: NCT00654576
Electronic supplementary material
The online version of this article (doi:10.1186/s12888-014-0212-0) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.
PMCID: PMC4149262  PMID: 25064681
Schizophrenia; Cost-effectiveness; Psychosocial intervention
6.  Duration of Untreated Psychosis Is Associated with Temporal and Occipitotemporal Gray Matter Volume Decrease in Treatment Naïve Schizophrenia 
PLoS ONE  2013;8(12):e83679.
Long duration of untreated psychosis (DUP) is associated with poor treatment outcome. Whether or not DUP is related to brain gray matter volume abnormalities in antipsychotic medication treatment naïve schizophrenia remains unclear at this time.
Patients with treatment-naïve schizophrenia and healthy controls went through brain scan using high resolution Magnetic Resonance Imaging. DUP was evaluated using the Nottingham Onset Schedule (NOS), and dichotomized as short DUP (≤ 26 weeks) or long DUP (>26 weeks). Voxel-based methods were used for volumetric measure in the brain.
Fifty-seven patients (27 short DUP and 30 long DUP) and 30 healthy controls were included in the analysis. There were significant gray matter volumetric differences among the 3 groups in bilateral parahippocampus gyri, right superior temporal gyrus, left fusiform gyrus, left middle temporal gyrus, and right superior frontal gyrus (p's<0.01). Compared with healthy controls, the long DUP group had significantly smaller volume in all these regions (p's <0.05). Compared with the short-DUP group, the long-DUP group had significantly smaller volume in right superior temporal gyrus, left fusiform gyrus, and left middle temporal gyrus (p's<0.01).
Our findings suggest that DUP is associated with temporal and occipitotemporal gray matter volume decrease in treatment naïve schizophrenia. The brain structural changes in untreated psychosis might contribute to poor treatment response and long-term prognosis in this patient population.
PMCID: PMC3877095  PMID: 24391807
7.  The relationship between obesity and neurocognitive function in Chinese patients with schizophrenia 
BMC Psychiatry  2013;13:109.
Studies have reported that up to 60% of individuals with schizophrenia are overweight or obese. This study explored the relationship between obesity and cognitive performance in Chinese patients with schizophrenia.
Outpatients with schizophrenia aged 18–50 years were recruited from 10 study sites across China. Demographic and clinical information was collected. A neuropsychological battery including tests of attention, processing speed, learning/memory, and executive functioning was used to assess cognitive function, and these 4 individual domains were transformed into a neurocognitive composite z score. In addition, height and weight were measured to calculate body mass index (BMI). Patients were categorized into 4 groups (underweight, normal weight, overweight and obese) based on BMI cutoff values for Asian populations recommended by the World Health Organization.
A total number of 896 patients were enrolled into the study. Fifty-four percent of participants were overweight or obese. A higher BMI was significantly associated with lower scores on the Wechsler Memory Scale-Revised (WMS-R) Visual Reproduction subscale, the Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale-Revised (WAIS-R) Digit Symbol subscale, and the composite z score (p’s ≤ 0.024). Obese patients with schizophrenia had significantly lower scores than normal weight patients on the Trail Making Test B, the WMS-R Visual Reproduction subscale, the WAIS Digit Symbol subscale, and the composite z score (p’s ≤ 0.004).
Our study suggests that, in addition to its well established risk for various cardiometabolic conditions, obesity is also associated with decreased cognitive function in Chinese patients with schizophrenia. Future studies should explore if weight loss and management can improve cognitive function in obese patients who suffer from schizophrenia.
PMCID: PMC3627610  PMID: 23570390
Schizophrenia; Cognitive function; Body mass index; Obesity; Overweight
8.  The impact of educational status on the clinical features of major depressive disorder among Chinese women 
Journal of Affective Disorders  2012;136(3):988-992.
Years of education are inversely related to the prevalence of major depressive disorder (MDD), but the relationship between the clinical features of MDD and educational status is poorly understood. We investigated this in 1970 Chinese women with recurrent MDD identified in a clinical setting.
Clinical and demographic features were obtained from 1970 Han Chinese women with DSM-IV major depression between 30 and 60 years of age across China. Analysis of linear, logistic and multiple logistic regression models were used to determine the association between educational level and clinical features of MDD.
Subjects with more years of education are more likely to have MDD, with an odds ratio of 1.14 for those with more than ten years. Low educational status is not associated with an increase in the number of episodes, nor with increased rates of co-morbidity with anxiety disorders. Education impacts differentially on the symptoms of depression: lower educational attainment is associated with more biological symptoms and increased suicidal ideation and plans to commit suicide.
Findings may not generalize to males or to other patient populations. Since the threshold for treatment seeking differs as a function of education there may an ascertainment bias in the sample.
The relationship between symptoms of MDD and educational status in Chinese women is unexpectedly complex. Our findings are inconsistent with the simple hypothesis from European and US reports that low levels of educational attainment increase the risk and severity of MDD.
PMCID: PMC3314924  PMID: 21824664
Major depressive disorder; Education; Socio-economic status; Symptom

Results 1-8 (8)