In a pilot randomized controlled trial a group of researchers of the Technion Institute of Technology (Israel) suggest the usefulness of pet therapy for improving apathy in schizophrenic patients. The paper was published in the January issue of Psychotherapy and Psychosomatics.
Anhedonia, a component of the negative symptom dimension and a core phenomenon in schizophrenia, is associated with poor social functioning and is resistant to treatment. We tested the hypothesis that animal-assisted therapy (AAT) may improve anhedonia. To compare the effect of psychosocial treatment sessions in which a dog was an active participant (AAT) with comparable sessions without a dog, using a controlled protocol. The hedonic tone of 10 chronic schizophrenia patients who participated in 10 weekly interactive sessions of AAT was compared to a control group treated without animal assistance. The hedonic tone was measured with the Snaith-Hamilton Pleasure Scale.
Subjective quality of life variables and clinical symptoms were also assessed. The AAT group showed a significant improvement in the hedonic tone compared to controls. They also showed an improvement in the use of leisure time and a trend towards improvement in motivation. AAT may contribute to the psychosocial rehabilitation and quality of life of chronic schizophrenia patients.
Tracking movement of immune cells identifies key first steps in inflammatory arthritis
23.01.2017 | Massachusetts General Hospital
Team discovers how bacteria exploit a chink in the body's armor
20.01.2017 | University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
For the first time ever, a cloud of ultra-cold atoms has been successfully created in space on board of a sounding rocket. The MAIUS mission demonstrates that quantum optical sensors can be operated even in harsh environments like space – a prerequi-site for finding answers to the most challenging questions of fundamental physics and an important innovation driver for everyday applications.
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Researchers from the University of Hamburg in Germany, in collaboration with colleagues from the University of Aarhus in Denmark, have synthesized a new superconducting material by growing a few layers of an antiferromagnetic transition-metal chalcogenide on a bismuth-based topological insulator, both being non-superconducting materials.
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Laser-driving of semimetals allows creating novel quasiparticle states within condensed matter systems and switching between different states on ultrafast time scales
Studying properties of fundamental particles in condensed matter systems is a promising approach to quantum field theory. Quasiparticles offer the opportunity...
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