Medical University Innsbruck - Department of Psychiatry and Psychotherapy

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The Department of Psychiatry and Psychotherapy is embedded in the main campus of the Medical University Innsbruck. As the latter includes a large general hospital, this location affords the ideal opportunity to harmonize basic and clinical research with clinical services enabling manifold possibilities of translational medicine.

The department comprises five independent divisions covering all relevant subspecialties of psychiatry from the perspectives of teaching and clinical services. The core research priorities and clinical medicine include schizophrenia; consultation liaison psychiatry and patient related outcomes; old age psychiatry and dementia; depression and suicide and the EU Human Brain Project.

The department of psychiatry and psychotherapy at the medical university
the department of psychiatry and psychotherapy at the medical university innsbruck consists of five independent divisions general psychiatry biological psychiatry psychosomatic medicine child and adolescent psychiatry as well as medical psychology overall we have around 165 inpatient beds and serve catchment the catchment area of innsbruck plus the surrounding countries for high-end medicine our strongholds in clinical research are schizophrenia research consultation liaison psychiatry with the psycho-oncology dementia suicidology affective disorders research and we also do research in eating disorders in addiction the psychopharmacology of schizophrenia has been my main research focus for the past 25 years schizophrenia is a disorder with a wide range of symptoms and potential disabilities and treatment really has to be individually targeted to specific patient needs the human brain project is a project that is planned over 10 years and it's actually the largest research project ever funded by the european commission it consists of over 100 partner universities mostly from europe but also from the united states and from japan the challenge is to structure and create an education and training program especially for the phd students working in the project students from many different disciplines like i.t or mathematics or biology or medicine have to work in this project and have to understand each other the project aims at creating a medical informatics platform from which a unified disease models can be derived and built into a computer so this actually will lead to new diagnosis and definition of psychiatric diseases we currently conduct a trial on the potential role of in emotional intelligence as a trademark of schizophrenia to this end we investigate patients suffering from schizophrenia as well as bipolar patients so patients suffering from serious mental illness their healthy siblings as well as a healthy control group in addition we are interested in resilience and its impact on patient outcomes and this is a cooperative project with the kia university in tokyo japan my research focuses mainly on the preclinical stages of dementia so we try to find neuroimaging biomarkers and clinical markers to predict the conversion from mild cognitive impairment to alzheimer's disease in my lab we are highly interested to discover biomarkers to diagnose alzheimer's disease we are especially focusing on cerebrospinal fluid where three biomarkers are well established this is beta-amyloid tau and phosphate but we also want to find novel biomarkers in blood and in blood cells where we are focusing on plasma on monocytes or in platelets to diagnose easier and faster because we can collect blood from every patient which may allow also to diagnose early forms of dementia like mite cognitive impairment on the one hand we have a good diagnostic procedure for patients but on the other hand we can offer long-term care for dementia patients and for caregivers besides survival rates and treatment costs patients quality of life has become a major evaluation criterion in somatic medicine the main goal of patient reporting outcomes and quality
Life research is to integrate the patients perspectives
of life research is to integrate the patient's perspective into treatment evaluation currently we are developing computer adaptive questionnaires for the very precise assessment of physical and psychological symptoms and health states we have developed a software called chess computer-based health evaluation system in order to collect analyze and present patient reported outcomes in a clinically meaningful way a main topic we are starting here is the time that precedes the suicidal act so we have conducted studies where we have asked patients who have survived the suicide attempt what was going on before they actually did the deed what were they thinking how long was uh was the duration of the crisis did they reflect and uh think about the past or uh was there a change in the envisagement of the suicidal method a number of studies have dealt with the possibility that the limitation of access to suicidal means actually can reduce suicide numbers and many starters have actually found an effect of limiting the access to a high bridge to a high building or to firearms and have found out that not only the suicide numbers with this specific method but the roles in general can be reduced psyche immunology is also situated between medicine and psychiatry this is a research dealing with the interactions between stress and biological reactions of different biological systems like like the endocrine system the nervous system the immune system we know now that
What inflammatory processes really can influence?
inflammatory processes really can influence neurotransmitters neurotransmitter pathways the tryptophan and the phenylalanine pathway they can be influenced by low grade inflammation and these processes change the metabolism of this new transmitter above this we hope that we can develop biomarkers biomarkers which can be combined to biomarker profiles and with these profiles a very diagnostic approach but also a very individual therapeutic approach should be possible in the future you

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