Cognitive Functioning in relation to Mood Disorders

A study conducted by Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania recently researched individuals with Bipolar I, Bipolar II, Major Depressive Disorders, and control groups. Results show a correlation between high accuracy on complex cognition domain and verbal reasoning and diagnosis of Bipolar I and high accuracy on emotional recognition and Major Depressive Disorders. However, Bipolar II ranked similarly with control group individuals.  Researchers did not determine which phase the individuals were in during tested or what medications (if any) the individuals were taking. This paper increases relevance to the evolutionary viewpoint of mental illness. In other words, what role does mental illness play in the survival of our species? For instance, schizophrenia has the same prevalence in all societies across the world; additionally, it has been written in history dating back to the Middle Ages of Western cultures. What does mental illness provide us with? Is it a way to stop us from suffering from another, perhaps worse disease, like sickle-cell anemia? Or is it a way to problem-solve creatively or act as an environmental warning gone haywire?

Check out the link below for the paper and let me know what you think!

Click to access nihms861729.pdf


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