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Research Projects

Research projects for students

The master thesis phase provides an unique opportunity for both medical and non-medical (psychology, remedial education, and other related studies) students to come in touch with medical science. Master students are welcome to participate in current research at the department of Psychiatry of the Erasmus MC.


Specific information about requirements of the master thesis projects for medical students can be found on: masteronderzoek.


Both medical and non-medical students can apply for the projects described below. For medical students: all topics have the approval of the OSC of the Erasmus MC (see also projectendatabase). Other topics in the field of clinical, neurobiological, social, forensic, or epidemiological psychiatry can be formulated after consultation with the Master Thesis Coordinator of the department of Psychiatry Dr. N. Grootendorst – van Mil (n.grootendorst@erasmusmc.nl).


For specific topics in Medical Psychology: students interested in the field of psycho-oncology, stress and PTSD in patients in a medical setting may contact Dr. L.W. Kranenburg (l.kranenburg@erasmusmc.nl) for information on research paper opportunities on these topics.

 

Research descriptions
Researchprojects   Suicidal behavior in the peripartum period
Department
Psychiatry, Erasmus MC

Supervisor(s)
E. Poels

Contact details

e.poels@erasmusmc.nl


Background and problem of interest
The peripartum period, i.e. the period during pregnancy and in the first half year postpartum, is a critical period for the mother and child. Although the incidence of suicide among women during pregnancy and after giving birth is lower than that of women who have not given birth, suicide still remains one of the most common leading causes of maternal death after delivery. Studies have shown that the risk of maternal suicide is higher when women experience peripartum depression or anxiety. But less is known about the prevalence of suicidal ideations, suicidal plans, and suicide attempts in the clinical population of women with peripartum psychiatric problems. Also, risk factors for suicide or suicide attempts in this specific population are not yet defined. This information is important to guide clinicians in their decision making.

Study goal
In the current study we will examine the prevalence of suicidal ideation and suicidal behavior among women with psychiatric problems during pregnancy and the postpartum period.

Specific research question
  • What is the prevalence of suicidal ideation and behavior in the peripartum period for women with perinatal psychiatric problems?
  • What are risk factors for suicidal ideation and behavior in the peripartum period for women with perinatal psychiatric problems?
  • What is the prognosis of women with suicidal ideation and behavior in the peripartum period?

Study design (methods, materials)
The research project is part of the IMPROP ‘Improving psychiatric health care with the use of patient information collected in medical files’ research project.

This is a retrospective cohort study with data collected through routine clinical care from the medical files of patients that were treated at the out- and inpatient clinics of the department of psychiatrie at the Erasmus MC. The department of psychiatry is a teriary psychiatric center specialized in pregnancy-related psychiatric disorders.
Data will be collected on psychiatric diagnosis and symptoms, duration and type of treatment/care, psychopharmacological medication use, psychiatric and somatic comorbidity, physical health, pregnancy related information (obstetric and neonatal information and complications related to psychopharmacology of psychiatric disorder), information on intoxications and socioeconomic information.

Expected results
The main study endpoints are answers to the research questions described above, described in a master thesis.

References
  • Reid HE, Pratt D, Edge D, Wittkowski A. Maternal Suicide Ideation and Behaviour During Pregnancy and the First Postpartum Year: A Systematic Review of Psychological and Psychosocial Risk Factors. Front Psychiatry. 2022 Mar 24;13:765118.
  • Munk-Olsen T, Laursen TM, Pedersen CB, Mors O, Mortensen PB. New parents and mental disorders: a population-based register study. JAMA. 2006;296(21):2582-9.

One-time or continuous project?
Continuous project

Task description
Data will be extracted from the medical files to answer predefined research questions within the above mentioned categories. Data will be extracted into SPSS files, in order to facilitate quantitative statistical analyses. All data will be anonymously coded, analyzed, reported and stored according to the Erasmus MC research integrity policy. Participating in the complete process of data collection while writing your thesis helps you to understand your data much better and therefore makes the writing process a lot more efficient and rewarding!
Univariate or multivariate analyses will be used depending on the research question

Start date
In consultation with the supervisor

Specific requirements
  • You are a master student in Medicine, Psychology or a related study
  • You have a good verbal and written command of the Dutch language
  • You can work independently but also as a valuable team member
  • You have good communication skills
  • You have a great sense of responsibility
  • You work very precise
  • Relevant work experience is a plus.

Other details?
Medical students: 5 days per week / 20 weeks other study in consultation
Unfortunately, we cannot reimburse travel expenses and there is no internship allowance.

Application procedure

Questions regarding this internship can be addressed to dr. E. Poels, e.poels@erasmusmc.nl. If you want to apply for the position, please send a recent resume and a motivation letter.


Researchprojects   Side effects of antipsychotic medication
Department
Psychiatry, Erasmus MC

Contact details

n.grootendorst@erasmusmc.nl


Background and problem of interest
Neurologic side effects known as extrapyramidal symptoms are prominent with antipsychotic medications. Principal manifestations include dystonias, akathisia and parkinsonism. These side effects are highly distressing. Prevention would be the best management strategy. However, we currently lack information to adequately predict the occurrence of these side effects.

Study goal
The goal of this research project find patient and pharmacological characteristics related to the occurrence of extrapyramidal symptoms associated with use of antipsychotic medications.

Specific research question
  • What is the prevalence of extrapyramidal symptoms?
  • What patient characteristics are related with extrapyramidal symptoms?
  • What pharmacological (dose, duration of use, type of antipsychotic) characteristics are related with extrapyramidal symptoms?

Study design (methods, materials)
The research project is part of the IMPROP ‘Improving psychiatric health care with the use of patient information collected in medical files’ research project.

This retrospective cohort study with data collected through routine clinical care from the medical files of patients that were treated at the out- and inpatient clinics of the department of psychiatry at the Erasmus MC. The department of psychiatry is a tertiary psychiatric center specialized in first-onset psychotic disorders.
Data will be collected on psychiatric diagnosis and symptoms, duration and type of treatment/care, psychopharmacological medication use, psychiatric and somatic comorbidity, physical health, information on intoxications and socioeconomic information.

Expected results
The main study endpoints are answers to the research questions described above, described in a master thesis.

References
  • van Harten PN, Hoek HW, Kahn RS. Acute dystonia induced by drug treatment. BMJ. 1999 Sep 4;319(7210):623-6.
  • Gardner DM, Abidi S, Ursuliak Z, Morrison J, Teehan MD, Tibbo PG. Incidence of Oculogyric Crisis and Long-Term Outcomes With Second-Generation Antipsychotics in a First-Episode Psychosis Program. J Clin Psychopharmacol. 2015 Dec;35(6):715-8.

One-time or continuous project?
Continuous project

Task description
Data will be extracted from the medical files to answer predefined research questions within the above mentioned categories. Data will be extracted into SPSS files, in order to facilitate quantitative statistical analyses. All data will be anonymously coded, analyzed, reported and stored according to the Erasmus MC research integrity policy. Participating in the complete process of data collection while writing your thesis helps you to understand your data much better and therefore makes the writing process a lot more efficient and rewarding!
Univariate or multivariate analyses will be used depending on the research question.

Start date
In consultation with the supervisor

Specific requirements
  • You are a master student in Medicine, Pharmacy or a related study
  • You have a good verbal and written command of the Dutch language
  • You can work independently but also as a valuable team member
  • You have good communication skills
  • You have a great sense of responsibility
  • You work very precise
  • Relevant work experience is a plus.

Other details?
Medical students: 5 days per week / 20 weeks
Unfortunately, we cannot reimburse travel expenses and there is no internship allowance.

Application procedure

Questions regarding this internship can be addressed to dr. N.H. Grootendorst, n.grootendorst@erasmusmc.nl. If you want to apply for the position, please send a recent resume and a motivation letter.


Researchprojects   Sleep and psychopathology
Department
Psychiatry, The iBerry Study

Supervisor(s)
N.H. Grootendorst & G.C. Vedder

Contact details
Internship coordinator: Nita de Neve-Enthoven
+31 (0) 10 703 59 78

iberrystudy@erasmusmc.nl / n.deneve-enthoven@erasmusmc.nl


www.iberrystudy.nl


Background and problem of interest
Although we do not know the exact functions of sleep, sleep plays an important role in restorative processes for the brain. Sleep helps important cognitive functions for every-day functioning, such as attention, memory, and emotion (1). Because of the numerous ways sleep impacts our brain, sleep problems and mental health problems often go hand in hand. The direction of this association is still to be demonstrated. Is it that sleep problems increase the risk of mental health problems, or is it the other way around (2)? Given observations of behavioural problems affecting sleep, and from sleep problems leading to behavioural problems it is most likely that the associations are bidirectional or circular in nature (2). Research is indicating that the amount of sleep has decreased over the last decades, in particular among adolescents (3), what further increases the importance of this research area.

Study goal
The goal of this research project is to further unravel the association between sleep and psychopathology.

Specific research question
  • What is the association between sleep and psychotic experiences in adolescents?
  • What is the association between sleep and suicidality in adolescents?
  • What is the association between sleep and academic achievement?
  • What is the relationship between gaming and screentime and sleep?
  • How does perceived sleep and chronotype correlates with sleep measured using actigraphy?
  • How does the COVID-19 pandemic influence sleep parameters?

Study design (methods, materials)
The research project is part of the iBerry (Investigating Behavioral and Emotional Risk in Rotterdam Youth) Study, a prospective longitudinal cohort study (N=1022). The overall goal of the iBerry Study is to investigate (determinants for) the transition of having non-specific symptoms in adolescence to the development of full-blown psychiatric disorders later in life. Adolescents that participate in the iBerry Study come from the Greater Rotterdam region (the Netherlands), in which both rural and urban places are represented. Every 2-3 years the adolescent and his/her parents are invited to the iBerry research center for follow-up measurements, for a total period of 10 years. The baseline assessment was completed mid-2019, follow-up measurements have started in the beginning of 2019.

The assessments include psychiatric interviews, physical measurements, neuropsychological tests and questionnaires. Amongst these are (either measured from the adolescent, parent or both):
  • Sleep and Activity research: actigraphy device (physical activity intensity and sleep/wake measurements), sleep and exercise diary, questionnaires
  • Demographic questionnaires
  • Psychiatric interview for DSM diagnoses
  • Psychiatric symptoms questionnaires: e.g. Youth Self Report (YSR), Child Behavior Checklist (CBCL), Brief Symptom Inventory (BSI)
  • Questionnaire about substance use
  • IQ: Snijders-Oomen Niet-verbale intelligentietests (SON-R)
  • Questionnaires about social media use and gaming (IAT/VAT)

Expected results
We expect to learn more about determinants of sleep problems. Furthermore, we expect sleep problems to be associated with several forms of psychopathology. In addition, poor sleep is likely to be related to decreased academic achievement.

References
  • Tarokh, L., Saletin, J. M., & Carskadon, M. A. (2016). Sleep in adolescence: Physiology, cognition and mental health. Neuroscience and biobehavioral reviews, 70, 182.
  • Gregory, A. M., & Sadeh, A. (2016). Annual research review: sleep problems in childhood psychiatric disorders–a review of the latest science. Journal of child psychology and psychiatry, 57(3), 296-317.
  • Keyes, K. M., Maslowsky, J., Hamilton, A., & Schulenberg, J. (2015). The great sleep recession: changes in sleep duration among US adolescents, 1991–2012. Pediatrics, 135(3), 460-468.
  • Grootendorst-van Mil, N.H., Bouter, D.C., Hoogendijk, W.J.G., Van Jaarsveld, S.F.L.M., Tiemeier H., Mulder, C.L., & Roza, S.J. (submitted). The iBerry Study: A longitudinal cohort study of adolescents at high risk of psychopathology.

One-time or continuous project?
Continuous project

Task description
Inviting participants for follow-up measurements, data-collection adolescents and parents (including an extensive psychiatric interview and physical measurements), data processing and data-entry, administrative tasks, literature study, data analysis, reporting results. Final study results are presented at the Department of Psychiatry.
An internship at the iBerry Study introduces you to all the facets that are relevant in conducting a longitudinal study on such a large scale. Hard work? Yes, we are looking for students who have a hands-on mentality. But we believe that hard work pays off. Participating in the complete process of data collection while writing your thesis helps you to understand your data much better and therefore makes the writing process a lot more efficient and rewarding!

Start date
In consultation with the internship coordinator.

Specific requirements
  • You are a master student in Medicine
  • You have a good verbal and written command of the Dutch language
  • You can work independently but also as a valuable team member
  • You have good communication skills and telephone skills
  • You have a great sense of responsibility
  • You work very precise
  • Relevant work experience and venipuncture qualification are a plus.

Other details?
Medical students: 5 days per week / 20 weeks
Unfortunately, we cannot reimburse travel expenses and there is no internship allowance.

Application procedure

Questions regarding this internship can be addressed to internship coordinator Nita de Neve-Enthoven: n.deneve-enthoven@erasmusmc.nl / +31 (0) 10 703 59 78. If you want to apply for the position, please send a recent resume and a motivation letter to n.deneve-enthoven@erasmusmc.nl.

Researchprojects   Psychotic-like experiences in adolescence
Department
Psychiatry, The iBerry Study

Supervisor(s)
N.H. Grootendorst & D.C. Bouter

Contact details
Internship coordinator: Nita de Neve-Enthoven
+31 (0) 10 703 59 78

iberrystudy@erasmusmc.nl / n.deneve-enthoven@erasmusmc.nl


www.iberrystudy.nl


Background and problem of interest
Psychotic-like experiences, such as hallucinations and delusions, are common in children and adolescents. Population-based studies report prevalence rates ranging from 5 to 35%, with a median prevalence of psychotic-like experiences in adolescence of 7,5% (1). Although these experiences are common, psychotic-like experiences at this age are a risk factor for both psychotic and non-psychotic psychiatric disorders, and suicide attempts (2-4). Furthermore, adolescent psychotic-like experiences are associated with adverse social, educational and occupational outcomes in young adulthood (5). Given the unfavorable outcomes associated with psychotic-like experiences in adolescence it is important to recognize those at risk for psychotic-like experiences as early as possible for intervention purposes.

Study goal
The goal of this research project is to better understand psychotic-like experiences in adolescents and how they are associated with emotional and behavioral problems and psychiatric disorders.

Specific research question
  • What risk factors are associated with psychotic-like experiences in adolescents? (e.g. major life events, socio demographic characteristics, family characteristics, IQ)
  • What is the relationship between psychotic-like experiences and (subclinical) internalizing symptoms or disorders in adolescents? (e.g. depressive symptoms, anxiety)
  • What is the relationship between psychotic-like experiences and (subclinical) externalizing symptoms or disorders in adolescents? (e.g. conduct problems, substance use)

Study design (methods, materials)
The research project is part of the iBerry (Investigating Behavioral and Emotional Risk in Rotterdam Youth) Study, a prospective longitudinal cohort study (N=1022) (6). The overall goal of the iBerry Study is to investigate (determinants for) the transition of having non-specific symptoms in adolescence to the development of full-blown psychiatric disorders later in life. Adolescents that participate in the iBerry Study come from the Greater Rotterdam region (the Netherlands), in which both rural and urban places are represented. Every 2-3 years the adolescent and his/her parents are invited to the iBerry research center for follow-up measurements, for a total period of 10 years. The baseline assessment was completed mid-2019, follow-up measurements have started in the beginning of 2019.

The assessments include psychiatric interviews, physical measurements, neuropsychological tests and questionnaires. Amongst these are (either measured from the adolescent, parent or both):
  • Demographic questionnaires
  • Psychotic-like experiences (PQ-16)
  • Psychiatric interview for DSM diagnoses
  • Psychiatric symptoms questionnaires: e.g. Youth Self Report (YSR), Child Behavior Checklist (CBCL), Brief Symptom Inventory (BSI)
  • Questionnaire about substance use
  • IQ: Snijders-Oomen Niet-verbale intelligentietests (SON-R)
  • Interview on major life events and traumatic experiences

Expected results
We expect that psychotic-like experiences are associated with more emotional and behavioral problems. The problems occur both before and after the psychotic-like experiences. Furthermore, we expect that adolescents that report psychotic-like experiences more often meet the criteria for psychiatric diagnoses. Psychotic-like experience are proposed as an import risk factor for both psychiatric disorders and adverse outcomes in adolescents.

References
  • Kelleher I, Connor D, Clarke MC, Devlin N, Harley M, Cannon M. Prevalence of psychotic symptoms in childhood and adolescence: a systematic review and meta-analysis of population-based studies. Psychol Med. 2012 Sep;42(9):1857-63.
  • Kelleher I, Keeley H, Corcoran P, Lynch F, Fitzpatrick C, Devlin N, et al. Clinicopathological significance of psychotic experiences in non-psychotic young people: evidence from four population-based studies. Br J Psychiatry. 2012 Jul;201(1):26-32.
  • Remberk B. Clinical significance of psychotic-like experiences in children and adolescents Znaczenie kliniczne doznan podobnych do psychotycznych u dzieci i mlodziezy. Psychiatr Pol. 2017 Apr 30;51(2):271-82.
  • Kelleher I, Corcoran P, Keeley H, Wigman JT, Devlin N, Ramsay H, et al. Psychotic symptoms and population risk for suicide attempt: a prospective cohort study. JAMA Psychiatry. 2013 Sep;70(9):940-8.
  • Davies J, Sullivan S, Zammit S. Adverse life outcomes associated with adolescent psychotic experiences and depressive symptoms. Soc Psychiatry Psychiatr Epidemiol. 2018 May;53(5):497-507.
  • Grootendorst-van Mil, N.H., Bouter, D.C., Hoogendijk, W.J.G., Van Jaarsveld, S.F.L.M., Tiemeier H., Mulder, C.L., & Roza, S.J. (submitted). The iBerry Study: A longitudinal cohort study of adolescents at high risk of psychopathology.

One-time or continuous project?
Continuous project

Task description
Inviting participants for follow-up measurements, data-collection adolescents and parents (including an extensive psychiatric interview and physical measurements), data processing and data-entry, administrative tasks, literature study, data analysis, reporting results. Final study results are presented at the Department of Psychiatry.
An internship at the iBerry Study introduces you to all the facets that are relevant in conducting a longitudinal study on such a large scale. Hard work? Yes, we are looking for students who have a hands-on mentality. But we believe that hard work pays off. Participating in the complete process of data collection while writing your thesis helps you to understand your data much better and therefore makes the writing process a lot more efficient and rewarding!

Start date
In consultation with the internship coordinator.

Specific requirements
  • You are a master student in Medicine
  • You have a good verbal and written command of the Dutch language
  • You can work independently but also as a valuable team member
  • You have good communication skills and telephone skills
  • You have a great sense of responsibility
  • You work very precise
  • Relevant work experience and venipuncture qualification are a plus.

Other details?
Medical students: 5 days per week / 20 weeks
Unfortunately, we cannot reimburse travel expenses and there is no internship allowance.

Application procedure

Questions regarding this internship can be addressed to internship coordinator Nita de Neve-Enthoven: n.deneve-enthoven@erasmusmc.nl / +31 (0) 10 703 59 78. If you want to apply for the position, please send a recent resume and a motivation letter to n.deneve-enthoven@erasmusmc.nl.

Researchprojects   In the red – the relationship between debts and mental health among youth
Department
Psychiatry, The iBerry Study

Supervisor(s)
N.H. Grootendorst & S.J. Ravensbergen

Contact details
Internship coordinator: Nita de Neve-Enthoven
+31 (0) 10 703 59 78

iberrystudy@erasmusmc.nl / n.deneve-enthoven@erasmusmc.nl


www.iberrystudy.nl


Background and problem of interest
A recent report from the Netherlands shows that one out of twelve Dutch households has registered problematic financial debts (Centraal Bureau voor de Statistiek, 2020). Having financial debts seems to elevate the risk for several common mental disorders (Meltzer, Bebbington, Brugha, Farrell, & Jenkins, 2013). Besides that, having mental health problems might lead to experiencing financial hardship, suggesting a vicious circle between financial problems and mental health (Kiely, Leach, Olesen, & Butterworth, 2015; Richardson, Elliott, Roberts, & Jansen, 2017). Furthermore, debt attitudes seem to be passed on from parents to children (Almenberg, Lusardi, Säve-Söderbergh, & Vestman, 2018). However, the exact relationship between debts and psychiatric symptoms still remains unclear, as well as factors that might predict the development of financial debts.

Most previous research focused on financial debts and mental health in adulthood. However, especially the transition into adulthood is an interesting period to learn more about the development of both problems and its possible interaction. During this period, adolescents become legally responsible for their own financial matters (Nibud, n.d.). Besides that, this is also a crucial phase for the development of psychiatric disorders (Kessler et al., 2005; Paus, Keshavan, & Giedd, 2008; Schulenberg, Sameroff, & Cicchetti, 2004).

Study goal
The goal of the research project is to examine how financial debts arise in adolescents and to analyze what the effects of poverty and financial debts are on the mental health and vice versa. In this way we hope to find starting points to develop policy and suitable care for adolescents who either develop psychiatric disorders, financial debts, or both.

Specific research question
  • What is the relationship between financial debts and (subclinical) internalizing symptoms in adolescents? (e.g. depressive symptoms, anxiety)
  • What is the relationship between financial debts and (subclinical) externalizing symptoms in adolescents? (e.g. conduct problems, substance use)
  • What are predictors of financial debts in adolescents? (e.g. personality factors, IQ, social support, substance use, financial stress, decision-making abilities, family characteristics, socio demographic characteristics)
  • How do financial debts and psychiatric disorders (co-)develop into early adulthood?

Study design (methods, materials)
The research project is part of the iBerry (Investigating Behavioral and Emotional Risk in Rotterdam Youth) Study, a prospective longitudinal cohort study (N=1022) (Grootendorst-van Mil et al, submitted). The overall goal of the iBerry Study is to investigate (determinants for) the transition of having non-specific symptoms in adolescence to the development of full-blown psychiatric disorders later in life. Adolescents that participate in the iBerry Study come from the Greater Rotterdam region (the Netherlands), in which both rural and urban places are represented. Every 2-3 years the adolescent and his/her parents are invited to the iBerry research centre for follow-up measurements, for a total period of 10 years. The baseline assessment was completed mid-2019, follow-up measurements have started since early 2019.

The assessments include psychiatric interviews, physical measurements, neuropsychological tests and questionnaires. Amongst these are (either measured by adolescent, parent or both):
  • Demographic questionnaires
  • Questionnaires about (family) income and financial debts
  • Financial scarcity/stress: Psychological Inventory Financial Scarcity (PIFS)
  • Psychiatric interview
  • Psychiatric symptoms questionnaires: e.g. Youth Self Report (YSR), Child Behavior Checklist (CBCL), Brief Symptom Inventory (BSI)
  • Questionnaire about substance use
  • Self-Reported Early Delinquency scale (SRED)
  • IQ: Snijders-Oomen Niet-verbale intelligentietests (SON-R)
  • Decision making: Iowa gambling task (IGT)
  • Social support: Multidimensional Scale of Perceived Social Support (MSPSS)
  • Parental involvement: Supervision/Involvement Scale – revised

During the project we collaborate with the Nationaal Instituut voor Budgetvoorlichting (Nibud), an independent organization that investigates, informs and advises about household finances in the Netherlands.

Expected results
It is expected that financial debts have a positive relationship with both internalizing and externalizing symptoms in adolescents, and that this works as a vicious circle over time. Furthermore, it is expected that debts arise from the age of 18 and once they have developed, the total debt amount keeps increasing. Another expectation is that adolescents who develop debts, have parents who have financial problems as well. Other expected determinants for developing debts and co-occurring mental disorders are: IQ, living environment, educational level, social support, risk taking behavior and substance use.

References
  • Almenberg, J., Lusardi, A., Säve-Söderbergh, J., & Vestman, R. (2018). Attitudes toward debt and debt behavior (No. w24935). National Bureau of Economic Research.
  • Centraal Bureau voor de Statistiek (2020). Schuldenproblematiek in beeld: Huishoudens met geregistreerde problematische schulden 2015-2018. Centraal Bureau voor de Statistiek.
  • Grootendorst-van Mil, N.H., Bouter, D.C., Hoogendijk, W.J.G., Van Jaarsveld, S.F.L.M., Tiemeier H., Mulder, C.L., & Roza, S.J. (submitted). The iBerry Study: A longitudinal cohort study of adolescents at high risk of psychopathology.
  • Kessler, R. C., Berglund, P., Demler, O., Jin, R., Merikangas, K. R., & Walters, E. E. (2005). Lifetime prevalence and age-of-onset distributions of DSM-IV disorders in the National Comorbidity Survey Replication. Archives of General Psychiatry, 62, 593-602.
  • Kiely, K. M., Leach, L. S., Olesen, S. C., & Butterworth, P. (2015). How financial hardship is associated with the onset of mental health problems over time. Social Psychiatry and Psychiatric Epidemiology, 50, 909-918.
  • Meltzer, H., Bebbington, P., Brugha, T., Farrell, M., & Jenkins, R. (2013). The relationship between personal debt and specific common mental disorders. The European Journal of Public Health, 23, 108-113.
  • Nibud. (n.d.). Uw kind wordt 18 jaar. Retrieved from https://www.nibud.nl/consumenten/uw-kind-wordt-18-jaar/ on November 6th 2020.

  • Paus, T., Keshavan, M., & Giedd, J. N. (2008). Why do many psychiatric disorders emerge during adolescence? Nature Reviews Neuroscience, 9, 947-957.
  • Richardson, T., Elliott, P., Roberts, R., & Jansen, M. (2017). A Longitudinal Study of Financial Difficulties and Mental Health in a National Sample of British Undergraduate Students. Community Mental Health Journal, 53, 344-352.
  • Schulenberg, J. E., Sameroff, A. J., & Cicchetti, D. (2004). The transition to adulthood as a critical juncture in the course of psychopathology and mental health. Development and Psychopathology, 16, 799-806.

One-time or continuous project?
Continuous project

Task description
Inviting participants for follow-up measurements, data-collection adolescents and parents (including an extensive psychiatric interview and physical measurements), data processing and data-entry, administrative tasks, literature study, data analysis, reporting results. Final study results are presented at the Department of Psychiatry.
An internship at the iBerry Study introduces you to all the facets that are relevant in conducting a longitudinal study on such a large scale. Hard work? Yes, we are looking for students who have a hands-on mentality. But we believe that hard work pays off. Participating in the complete process of data collection while writing your thesis helps you to understand your data much better and therefore makes the writing process a lot more efficient and rewarding!
An internship at the iBerry Study introduces you to all the facets that are relevant in conducting a longitudinal study on such a large scale. Hard work? Yes, we are looking for students who have a hands-on mentality. But we believe that hard work pays off. Participating in the complete process of data collection while writing your thesis helps you to understand your data much better and therefore makes the writing process a lot more efficient and rewarding!

Start date
In consultation with the internship coordinator.

Specific requirements
  • You are a master student in Medicine
  • You have a good verbal and written command of the Dutch language
  • You can work independently but also as a valuable team member
  • You have good communication skills and telephone skills
  • You have a great sense of responsibility
  • You work very precise
  • Relevant work experience and venipuncture qualification are a plus.

Other details?
Medical students: 5 days per week / 20 weeks
Unfortunately, we cannot reimburse travel expenses and there is no internship fee.

Application procedure

Questions regarding this internship can be addressed to internship coordinator Nita de Neve-Enthoven: n.deneve-enthoven@erasmusmc.nl / +31 (0) 10 703 59 78. If you want to apply for the position, please send a recent resume and a motivation letter to n.deneve-enthoven@erasmusmc.nl.

Researchprojects   Nonsuicidal self-injury and suicidal ideations in adolescence
Department
Psychiatry, The iBerry Study

Supervisor(s)
N.H. Grootendorst & N.G.M. de Neve-Enthoven

Contact details
Internship coordinator: Nita de Neve-Enthoven
+31 (0) 10 703 59 78

iberrystudy@erasmusmc.nl / n.deneve-enthoven@erasmusmc.nl


www.iberrystudy.nl


Background and problem of interest
Non-suicidal self-injury refers to the deliberate destruction or alteration of bodily tissue in the absence of suicidal intent, e.g. cutting, burning oneself (1). It typically has its onset and peak in adolescence, with previously found prevalances as high as 20% (2). NSSI has been associated with many other psychiatric problems, like mood, anxiety and substance use disorders and is also one of the strongest predictors for future suicide attempts (3). The World Health Organization states that suicide is the second leading cause of death among persons aged 15-29 years (4). Woman are more likely to self-harm and undertake suicide attempts, but men die more often by suicide than women, probably because of a preference for highly lethal methods (5).
Both NSSI and suicidality are often accompanied by poor social, educational and occupational outcomes and might not resolve without treatment (6). Timely treatment may reduce chances of developing comorbid disorders and enhance treatment outcome. Identifying factors that increase vulnerability is thus essential for prevention and early intervention.

Study goal
The present study wishes to contribute to the understanding of the phenomenology, risk factors and the development of NSSI and suicidality in adolescents by fulfilling important knowledge gaps in the literature.

Specific research question
  • What is the association between nonsuicidal self-injury and suicidality in adolescence?
  • What risk factors are associated with nonsuicidal self-injury and suicidality in adolescence? (e.g. socio demographic characteristics, IQ, substance use, social support)
  • What are the functions of nonsuicidal self-injury in adolescence? (e.g. self-punishment, sensation-seeking)
  • What is the association between nonsuicidal self-injury, suicidality and internalizing and externalizing problems?
  • What is the association between non suicidal self-injury, suicidality and having psychotic-like experiences?
  • What is the association between nonsuicidal self-injury, suicidality and peer victimization?
  • What is the association between nonsuicidal self-injury, suicidality and social media use?
  • How do nonsuicidal self-harm and suicidality develop into adulthood?

Study design (methods, materials)
The research project is part of the iBerry (Investigating Behavioral and Emotional Risk in Rotterdam Youth) Study, a prospective longitudinal cohort study (N=1022) (Grootendorst-van Mil et al, submitted). The overall goal of the iBerry Study is to investigate (determinants for) the transition of having non-specific symptoms in adolescence to the development of full-blown psychiatric disorders later in life. Adolescents that participate in the iBerry Study come from the Greater Rotterdam region (the Netherlands), in which both rural and urban places are represented. Every 2-3 years the adolescent and his/her parents are invited to the iBerry research centre for follow-up measurements, for a total period of 10 years. The baseline assessment was completed mid-2019, follow-up measurements have started since early 2019.

The assessments include psychiatric interviews, physical measurements, neuropsychological tests and questionnaires. Amongst these are (either measured by adolescent, parent or both):
  • Demographic questionnaires
  • Questionnaires about (family) income and financial debts
  • Financial scarcity/stress: Psychological Inventory Financial Scarcity (PIFS)
  • Psychiatric interview
  • Psychiatric symptoms questionnaires: e.g. Youth Self Report (YSR), Child Behavior Checklist (CBCL), Brief Symptom Inventory (BSI)
  • Questionnaire about substance use
  • Self-Reported Early Delinquency scale (SRED)
  • IQ: Snijders-Oomen Niet-verbale intelligentietests (SON-R)
  • Decision making: Iowa gambling task (IGT)
  • Social support: Multidimensional Scale of Perceived Social Support (MSPSS)
  • Parental involvement: Supervision/Involvement Scale – revised

During the project we collaborate with the Nationaal Instituut voor Budgetvoorlichting (Nibud), an independent organization that investigates, informs and advises about household finances in the Netherlands.

Study design (methods, materials)
The research project is part of the iBerry (Investigating Behavioral and Emotional Risk in Rotterdam Youth) Study, a prospective longitudinal cohort study (N=1022) (7). The overall goal of the iBerry Study is to investigate (determinants for) the transition of having non-specific symptoms in adolescence to the development of full-blown psychiatric disorders later in life. Adolescents that participate in the iBerry Study come from the Greater Rotterdam region (the Netherlands), in which both rural and urban places are represented. Every 2-3 years the adolescent and his/her parents are invited to the iBerry research center for follow-up measurements, for a total period of 10 years. The baseline assessment was completed mid-2019, follow-up measurements have started since early 2019.
The assessments include psychiatric interviews, physical measurements, neuropsychological tests and questionnaires. Amongst these are (either measured by adolescent, parent or both):
  • Automutilation: Inventory of Statements About Self-Injury (ISAS)
  • Suicidality: Vragenlijst Over Zelfdoding en Zelfbeschadiging (VOZZ)
  • Demographic questionnaires
  • Psychiatric interview for DSM diagnoses
  • Psychiatric symptoms questionnaires: e.g. Youth Self Report (YSR), Child Behavior Checklist (CBCL), Brief Symptom Inventory (BSI)
  • Questionnaire about substance use
  • IQ: Snijders-Oomen Niet-verbale intelligentietests (SON-R)
  • Decision making: Iowa gambling task (IGT)
  • Questionnaire on bullying
  • Social support: Multidimensional Scale of Perceived Social Support (MSPSS)
  • Interview on major life events and traumatic experiences
  • Questionnaire on social media use
  • General Assessment of Functioning Scale
  • Child Outcome Rating Scale

Expected results
We expect that NSSI and suicidality are strongly associated. We expect that adolescents who report NSSI and/or suicidality report poorer outcomes on general functioning measures and more internalizing, externalizing problems and problematic substance use. Girls will report more NSSI than boys. We hypothesize that motivational background will vary for different types of NSSI and for boys and girls. Girls will more often report suicidal ideation and suicide attempts. Adolescents with a history of significant major life events and traumatic experiences will more often report NSSI or suicidal ideation.

References
  • Klonsky ED. Non-suicidal self-injury: an introduction. J Clin Psychol. 2007;63(11):1039-43.
  • Muehlenkamp JJ, Claes L, Havertape L, Plener PL. International prevalence of adolescent non-suicidal self-injury and deliberate self-harm. Child Adolesc Psychiatry Ment Health. 2012;6:10.
  • Ribeiro JD, Franklin JC, Fox KR, Bentley KH, Kleiman EM, Chang BP, et al. Self-injurious thoughts and behaviors as risk factors for future suicide ideation, attempts, and death: a meta-analysis of longitudinal studies. Psychol Med. 2016;46(2):225-36.
  • Organization WH. Suicide in the world: Global health estimates. 2019.
  • Miranda-Mendizabal A, Castellvi P, Pares-Badell O, Alayo I, Almenara J, Alonso I, et al. Gender differences in suicidal behavior in adolescents and young adults: Systematic review and meta-analysis of longitudinal studies. International Journal of Public Health. 2019;.64(2):pp.
  • Nock MK, Joiner TE, Jr., Gordon KH, Lloyd-Richardson E, Prinstein MJ. Non-suicidal self-injury among adolescents: diagnostic correlates and relation to suicide attempts. Psychiatry Res. 2006;144(1):65-72.
  • Grootendorst-van Mil, N.H., Bouter, D.C., Hoogendijk, W.J.G., Van Jaarsveld, S.F.L.M., Tiemeier H., Mulder, C.L., & Roza, S.J (2020). The iBerry Study: A longitudinal cohort study of adolescents at high risk of psychopathology. Submitted.

One-time or continuous project?
Continuous project

Task description
Inviting participants for follow-up measurements, data-collection adolescents and parents (including an extensive psychiatric interview and physical measurements), data processing and data-entry, administrative tasks, literature study, data analysis, reporting results. Final study results are presented at the Department of Psychiatry.
An internship at the iBerry Study introduces you to all the facets that are relevant in conducting a longitudinal study on such a large scale. Hard work? Yes, we are looking for students who have a hands-on mentality. But we believe that hard work pays off. Participating in the complete process of data collection while writing your thesis helps you to understand your data much better and therefore makes the writing process a lot more efficient and rewarding!

Start date
In consultation with the internship coordinator.

Specific requirements
  • You are a master student in Medicine
  • You have a good verbal and written command of the Dutch language
  • You can work independently but also as a valuable team member
  • You have good communication skills and telephone skills
  • You have a great sense of responsibility
  • You work very precise
  • Relevant work experience and venipuncture qualification are a plus.

Other details?
Medical students: 5 days per week / 20 weeks
Unfortunately, we cannot reimburse travel expenses and there is no internship fee.

Application procedure

Questions regarding this internship can be addressed to internship coordinator Nita de Neve-Enthoven: n.deneve-enthoven@erasmusmc.nl / +31 (0) 10 703 59 78. If you want to apply for the position, please send a recent resume and a motivation letter to n.deneve-enthoven@erasmusmc.nl.

Researchprojects   The UP’S Cohort study: a master thesis project on recovery from psychotic disorders
Department
Psychiatry

Supervisor(s)
Prof. Dr. C. L. Mulder

drs. B. C. van Aken (ups.studie@erasmusmc.nl)

drs. R. Rietveld (ups.studie@erasmusmc.nl)

drs. G.J. van Vliet – de Zwart (ups.studie@erasmusmc.nl)


Contact details

ups.studie@erasmusmc.nl


www.upsstudie.nl


Background and problem of interest
Recovery from psychosis is a construct that has gained increased attention over the past thirty years. Since the early nineties, patients and scientists have underlined the notion that recovery from a psychotic disorder can occur, even with symptoms being present (1-3). Subsequently, there has been increased attention for the multidimensional aspect of recovery in psychotic disorders such as schizophrenia (2). However, there is a large heterogeneity in definitions of recovery shown in the different long-term studies (4). This causes confusion amongst patients, clinicians and researchers, as it remains unclear how different factors may influence different forms of recovery (i.e. personal, functional, social and symptomatic). Therefore, the present study aims at finding determinants of personal recovery, and disentangling time-dependent relationships amongst four dimensions of recovery and its determinants over a ten-year period.

Study goal
This master thesis project will be part of the UP'S (ups and downs) cohort study, were we study recovery over time in people with psychotic disorders. We study the process of recovery, along with various determinants of which we know are of influence on the different forms of recovery and the disorder itself, such as sleep dysfunction, cardiovascular risk and drug-use. However, we do not know the exact effects of these determinants on symptomatology, executive functioning and other forms of recovery over time. It is hypothesized that physical health, drug-use and sleep dysfunction will worsen symptoms and have an incrementing effect on executive functioning over time. As a student, you will be part of this sub-study within the cohort.

Specific research question
Your master thesis’ topic can be about the following subjects:
  • Personal recovery
  • Executive functioning
  • Attachment

If preferable, all subjects can be investigated over time.

References
  • Remington G, Foussias G, Agid O. Progress in defining optimal treatment outcome in schizophrenia. CNS drugs. 2010;24(1):9-20.
  • Wunderink L, Nieboer RM, Wiersma D, Sytema S, Nienhuis FJ. Recovery in remitted first-episode psychosis at 7 years of follow-up of an early dose reduction/discontinuation or maintenance treatment strategy: long-term follow-up of a 2-year randomized clinical trial. JAMA Psychiatry. 2013;70(9):913-20.
  • Brazier J, Connell J, Papaioannou D, Mukuria C, Mulhern B, Peasgood T, et al. A systematic review, psychometric analysis and qualitative assessment of generic preference-based measures of health in mental health populations and the estimation of mapping functions from widely used specific measures. Health technology assessment (Winchester, England). 2014;18(34):vii.
  • Peasgood T, Brazier J, Papaioannou D. A systematic review of the validity and responsiveness of EQ-5D and SF-6D for depression and anxiety. HEDS Discussion paper 12/15. 2012.
  • Keetharuth AD, Brazier J, Connell J, Carlton J, Taylor Buck E, Ricketts T. Development and Validation of the Recovering Quality of Life (ReQoL) Outcome Measures. EEPRU Technical Research Report 050. Policy Research Unit in Economic Evaluation of Health and Care Interventions, Universities of Sheffield and York, 2017. (https://www. eepru. org. uk/EEPRU% 20report% 20MAIN% 20REPORT% 20v3. pdf), 2017.
  • Slade M, Leamy M, Bacon F, Janosik M, Le Boutillier C, Williams J, et al. International differences in understanding recovery: systematic review. Epidemiology and Psychiatric Sciences. 2012;21(4):353-64.

One-time or continuous project?
Ongoing project

Task description
Students will participate in every aspect of the study; informing participants, formulating hypotheses regarding above mentioned topics, collecting and analysing data, and subsequently writing a thesis using the acquired data. We expect students to examine their own research question within the UP’S cohort and present the results at the department of Psychiatry. Data collection consists of extensive interviews which are done every year for ten years. Recruitment of these patients, along with data collection, will be done in corporation of outreaching treatment teams. During the internship, students can therefore be partly working at the site of the teams.
An internship at the iBerry Study introduces you to all the facets that are relevant in conducting a longitudinal study on such a large scale. Hard work? Yes, we are looking for students who have a hands-on mentality. But we believe that hard work pays off. Participating in the complete process of data collection while writing your thesis helps you to understand your data much better and therefore makes the writing process a lot more efficient and rewarding!

Start date
In consultation with the researchers.

Specific requirements
  • Master student
  • Fluent Dutch speaking
  • Proactive attitude
  • Organizational skills
  • Social skills
  • Responsible
  • Flexible
  • Able to work independently and in a team
  • Experience with conducting interviews (for research) is a plus

Application procedure

More information about the study can be found at www.upsstudie.nl. If you have any questions regarding this master thesis project, please contact Judith de Zwart, Ruth Rietveld or Bernice van Aken via ups.studie@erasmusmc.nl. If you want to apply for the position, please send your CV and motivation letter.

Seminar

Seminars

Monday, April 22, 2024
at 12 h

Title

Studying patient-associated mutations in SETD1A using induced pluripotent stem cells



Presenter

Hilde Smeenk