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On the Nature of Suicide—Suicide as a Multipurpose Behaviour Nested in the Human Mind—An Alternative View!  [PDF]
Lars Jacobsson
Open Journal of Psychiatry (OJPsych) , 2018, DOI: 10.4236/ojpsych.2018.82013
Abstract: Suicide is a universal human phenomenon and seems to be a multipurpose behaviour which occurs in a number of different situations that not necessarily have to do with mental distress/disorder. It might as well be a kind of defence of a threatened self-image or revenge or punishment or weapon in a struggle for something more important than the own life. Is there a suicidal virus or meme nested in the human mind? Maybe it is the mere idea of suicide as an alternative way of dealing with a number of human dilemmas that should be the focus of our suicide preventive efforts? Suicide ideas are common in most populations, but ideas are just ideas. It is when the ideas—the suicidal thoughts—are converted to actions that they become dangerous. The focus for our suicide preventive work should be to counteract a destructive use of suicidal ideation. So, the crucial question is thus: how do we do that?
Internalized stigma of mental illness in Sweden and Iran—A comparative study  [PDF]
Lars Jacobsson, Helia Ghanean, Birgitta T?rnkvist
Open Journal of Psychiatry (OJPsych) , 2013, DOI: 10.4236/ojpsych.2013.34039

Objectives: Stigma and discrimination because of mental illness is still prevalent even in high-income countries where a lot of emphasis has been given to anti-stigma activities and measures to reduce the marginalization of these persons. One aspect of the stigma issue is the self-stigmatization that persons suffering from mental illness are experiencing. In this study two different societies have been compared as regards internalized stigma of mental illness. Methods: A widely used questionnaire was used by the Internalized Stigma of Mental Illness scale (ISMI). One sample of psychiatric patients from Sweden (N = 163) and from Iran (N = 138) is compared. Results: The Swedish sample generally reports lower levels of experienced stigma except for items covering selfblame and feelings of alienation. Conclusions: There are reasons to consider the aspect of self-stigmatization when working with mentally ill persons even in high income countries with well developed mental health services.

A Community Study on Attitudes to and Knowledge of Mental Illness in Tehran  [PDF]
Helia Ghanean, Marzieh Nojomi, Lars Jacobsson
Open Journal of Psychiatry (OJPsych) , 2015, DOI: 10.4236/ojpsych.2015.51004
Abstract: There are a limited number of studies on attitudes towards mental illness and mentally ill from Islamic countries even though Islam is the second largest of the religious beliefs in the world. An interesting element in Islamic teaching is the idea that mental illness as well as other ailments might be an effect of the will of Allah. This could imply that persons suffering from mental disorders might be less stigmatized. The aim of this study was to determine the knowledge and attitudes towards mental illness in the city of Tehran, Iran. Eight hundred subjects, randomly chosen from 4 districts of Tehran, responded to a modified version of a questionnaire developed by the World Psychiatric Association to reduce stigma because of schizophrenia. The self-completed questionnaire was delivered by 4 trained psychologists. The mean age of the sample was 37.5 years and 53.3% being males. A majority agreed that mental illness could be treated outside the hospital (70%) and 74% thought that mentally ill “can work in regular jobs”. Almost half agreed that “mentally ill are a public nuisance” and that “mentally ill people are dangerous”. One quarter agreed that they “would be ashamed if people knew someone in the family who was diagnosed with mental illness”. Generally males seemed to be more accepting than women. Generally the level of negative attitudes in Tehran population is at the same level as in other countries and cultures studied. Cultural beliefs and Islamic influence on attitudes towards mental illness and mentally ill need further studies. The result indicates a need for further actions to reduce the negative attitudes towards mentally ill in Tehran, Iran.
Internalized Stigma of Mental Illness in Swedish Patients with Mental Illness  [PDF]
Lars Jacobsson, Magnus Lejon, Anette Edin-Liljegren
Open Journal of Psychiatry (OJPsych) , 2017, DOI: 10.4236/ojpsych.2017.73012
Abstract: Stigma and discrimination because of epilepsy, leprosy and HIV/aids has decreased over the years, but this has not happened as regards mental illness. One aspect of the stigma issue is what has been described as self-stigmatization, the way the mentally ill look at themselves. The aim of this study was to illuminate the self-perception of mentally ill persons in a Swedish setting. An internationally well established questionnaire, Internalized Stigma of Mental Illness scale (ISMI) was used to investigate two samples of out-patients from northern Sweden (N = 260). Fifty two percent reported “minimum stigma”, 35% “mild” and 13% “moderate/severe” stigma. As many as 58% agreed to the statement “I am embarrassed or ashamed that I have a mental illness”. The levels of internalized stigma are rather high, but somewhat lower than reported from some other European and an Iranian study using the same methodology. In spite of several campaigns aimed at reducing the stigma and discrimination because of mental illness in Sweden, still the experience of self stigma is rather high. There is an urgent need to further developed anti-stigma strategies.
Suicidal expressions in young Swedish Sami, a cross-sectional study
Lotta Omma,Mikael Sandlund,Lars Jacobsson
International Journal of Circumpolar Health , 2013, DOI: 10.3402/ijch.v72i0.19862
Abstract: Objectives. To investigate the experience of suicidal expressions (death wishes, life weariness, ideation, plans and attempts) in young Swedish Sami, their attitudes toward suicide (ATTS), and experience of suicidal expressions and completed suicide in significant others and to compare with Swedes in general. Methods. A cross-sectional study comprising 516 Swedish Sami, 18–28 years of age together with an age and geographically matched reference group (n=218). Parts of the ATTS questionnaire have been used to cover different aspects of the suicidal complex.Data were analysed with regard to gender, occupation, counties and experience of negative societal treatment due to Sami background. Results. Both young Sami and young Swedes reported suicidal ideation, life weariness, and death wishes in a high degree (30–50%), but it was more common among the Sami. Having had plans to commit suicide showed a significant gender difference only in the Sami. The prevalence of suicide attempts did not differ significantly between Sami and Swedes. Subgroups of the Sami reported a higher degree of suicidal behaviour, Sami women and reindeer herders reported a 3, 5-fold higher odds of suicide attempts and a 2-fold higher odds having had plans committing suicide. Sami living in Vasterbotten/Jamtland/Vasternorrland and Sami with experience of ethnicity related bad treatment 2-fold higher odds of suicidal plans compared to those living in other counties. Conclusion. An increased occurrence of suicidal ideation/death wishes/life weariness in young Sami compared to young majority Swedes was found, but not an increased prevalence of suicide attempts and positive attitudes together with an increased awareness to handle suicide problems could be a contributing factor. Severe circumstances and experience of ethnicity-related bad treatment seems to contribute to increased levels of suicidal plans and attempts in subgroups of Sami.
The health of young Swedish Sami with special reference to mental health
Lotta Omma,Lars H. Jacobsson,Solveig Petersen
International Journal of Circumpolar Health , 2012, DOI: 10.3402/ijch.v71i0.18381
Abstract: Objectives. To investigate the health of young Sami in Sweden and the relationship between health and experience of negative societal treatment due to ethnicity, as well as socio-demographic background factors. Study design. Cross-sectional population-based questionnaire study. Methods. A total of 876 persons aged 18–28 and involved in Sami associated activities were addressed, and 516 (59%) responded to a questionnaire investigating physical health, mental health, and stress. Data were analyzed with regard to gender, family situation, occupation, education, enculturation factors and experience of being badly treated because of ethnicity. Results. A majority of the young Sami reported feeling healthy, but close to half of the group reported often having worries, often forgetting things and often experiencing lack of time for doing needed things. Women and those living alone reported a more negative health. Furthermore, half of the group had perceived bad treatment because of Sami ethnicity, and this was negatively associated with some aspects of mental health. Conclusion. The young Sami had a rather good and possibly slightly better health than other young Swedes, except regarding worries and stress. A high degree of bad treatment due to Sami ethnicity and its negative association with health, may partly explain the high degree of some health problems.
Shotgun Phage Display - Selection for Bacterial Receptins or other Exported Proteins
Jacobsson Karin,Rosander Anna,Bjerketorp Joakim,Frykberg Lars
Biological Procedures Online , 2003, DOI: 10.1251/bpo54
Abstract: Shotgun phage display cloning involves construction of libraries from randomly fragmented bacterial chromosomal DNA, cloned genes, or eukaryotic cDNAs, into a phagemid vector. The library obtained consists of phages expressing polypeptides corresponding to all genes encoded by the organism, or overlapping peptides derived from the cloned gene. From such a library, polypeptides with affinity for another molecule can be isolated by affinity selection, panning. The technique can be used to identify bacterial receptins and identification of their minimal binding domain, and but also to identify epitopes recognised by antibodies. In addition, after modification of the phagemid vector, the technique has also been used to identify bacterial extracytoplasmic proteins.
Effects of hydrogen bonding on supercooled liquid dynamics and the implications for supercooled water
Johan Mattsson,Rikard Bergman,Per Jacobsson,Lars B?rjesson
Physics , 2008, DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevB.79.174205
Abstract: The supercooled state of bulk water is largely hidden by unavoidable crystallization, which creates an experimentally inaccessible temperature regime - a 'no man's land'. We address this and circumvent the crystallization problem by systematically studying the supercooled dynamics of hydrogen bonded oligomeric liquids (glycols), where water corresponds to the chain-ends alone. This novel approach permits a 'dilution of water' by altering the hydrogen bond concentration via variations in chain length. We observe a dynamic crossover in the temperature dependence of the structural relaxation time for all glycols, consistent with the common behavior of most supercooled liquids. We find that the crossover becomes more pronounced for increasing hydrogen bond concentrations, which leads to the prediction of a marked dynamic transition for water within 'no man's land' at T~220 K. Interestingly, the predicted transition thus takes place at a temperature where a so called 'strong-fragile' transition has previously been suggested. Our results, however, imply that the dynamic transition of supercooled water is analogous to that commonly observed in supercooled liquids. Moreover, we find support also for the existence of a secondary relaxation of water with behavior analogous to that of the secondary relaxation observed for the glycols.
Five-year mortality in a cohort of people with schizophrenia in Ethiopia
Solomon Teferra, Teshome Shibre, Abebaw Fekadu, Girmay Medhin, Asfaw Wakwoya, Atalay Alem, Gunnar Kullgren, Lars Jacobsson
BMC Psychiatry , 2011, DOI: 10.1186/1471-244x-11-165
Abstract: We followed a cohort of 307 (82.1% males) patients with schizophrenia for five years in Butajira, rural Ethiopia. Mortality was recorded using broad rating schedule as well as verbal autopsy. Standardized Mortality Ratio (SMR) was calculated using the mortality in the demographic and surveillance site as a reference.Thirty eight (12.4%) patients, 34 men (11.1%) and 4 women (1.3%), died during the five-year follow up period. The mean age (SD) of the deceased for both sexes was 35 (7.35). The difference was not statistically significant (p = 0.69). It was 35.3 (7.4) for men and 32.3 (6.8) for women. The most common cause of death was infection, 18/38 (47.4%) followed by severe malnutrition, 5/38 (13.2%) and suicide 4/38 (10.5%). The overall SMR was 5.98 (95% CI = 4.09 to7.87). Rural residents had lower mortality with adjusted hazard ratio (HR) of 0.30 (95% CI = 0.12-0.69) but insidious onset and antipsychotic treatment for less than 50% of the follow up period were associated with higher mortality, adjusted HR 2.37 (95% CI = 1.04-5. 41) and 2.66(1.054-6.72) respectively.The alarmingly high mortality observed in this patient population is of major concern. Most patients died from potentially treatable conditions. Improving medical and psychiatric care as well as provision of basic needs is recommended.Schizophrenia is often called a 'life shortening disease' [1]. Mortality is increasingly recognized as a crucial outcome measure for quality of care patients with schizophrenia receive [2,3]. Several studies reported that people with schizophrenia live shorter lives compared with the general population [4]. Most of the reports come from inpatients registers, death registers or cohort of patients. These have found a two to three fold increase in all cause mortality compared with the general population, moreover; when compared with other mental disorders, having the diagnosis of schizophrenia carried a higher risk of mortality [5-9]. Factors contributing to premature death
The common FTO variant rs9939609 is not associated with BMI in a longitudinal study on a cohort of Swedish men born 1920-1924
Josefin A Jacobsson, Ulf Risérus, Tomas Axelsson, Lars Lannfelt, Helgi B Schi?th, Robert Fredriksson
BMC Medical Genetics , 2009, DOI: 10.1186/1471-2350-10-131
Abstract: The FTO rs9936609 was genotyped using an Illumina golden gate assay. BMI was calculated using standard methods and body fat was estimated by measuring skinfold thickness using a Harpenden caliper. Physical activity was assessed using a four question medical questionnaire.FTO rs9939609 was genotyped in 1153 elderly Swedish men taking part of a population-based cohort study, the ULSAM cohort. The risk of obesity and differences in BMI according to genotype at the ages of 50, 60, 70, 77 and 82 were investigated. We found no increased risk of obesity and no association with BMI at any age with the FTO rs9939609 variant. We found however interaction between physical activity at the age of 50 years and genotype on BMI levels (p = 0.039) and there was a clear trend towards larger BMI differences between the TT and AA carriers as well as between AT and AA carriers in the less physically active subjects.Here we found that the well established obesity risk allele for a common variant in FTO does not associate with increased BMI levels in a Swedish population of adult men which reached adulthood before the appearance of today's obesogenic enviroment. There is an interaction between physical activity and the effect of the FTO genotype on BMI levels suggesting that lack of physical activity is a requirement for an association of FTO gene variants to obesity.Today, about one in three adult can be classified as obese based on objectively measured weight and height. The increase started after the World War II, escalated in the seventies and the obesity rates have roughly tripled in the past 20 years. In Sweden one in hundred is considered morbidly obese today compared to one in thousand in the early 1970s [1-4].This worldwide rapid increase in the prevalence of obesity is much due to environmental factors, such as a sedentary lifestyle and develops from an imbalance between energy ingested and expended [5]. It is however also widely accepted that obesity is under strong genetic con
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