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#277171 - 02/25/09 08:20 PM Scars of child abuse reach down to genetic level
October Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 01/30/09
Posts: 2
Loc: Canada
Thought this would interest people here...
=========================================================
Scars of child abuse reach down to genetic level, scientists find
Last Updated: Monday, February 23, 2009 | 12:16 PM ET
CBC News
Child abuse early in life appears to permanently change how people respond to stress, say researchers in Montreal who studied the brains of suicide victims.

The team of scientists found early child abuse changed the expression of a gene that is important for responding to stress.

For the study, Prof. Michael Meaney of McGill University and his colleagues examined the brain tissue of 36 males in Quebec. 'Maybe we can create different interventions, say in adolescents, that will negate these negative impacts that have happened earlier.'— Dr. Stan Kutcher

Among the 36, 12 suffered severe childhood abuse, altering a gene that affects a person's response to trauma, the researchers reported in this week's issue of the journal Nature Neuroscience.

Those 12 were compared with the brains of 12 accident victims who had not been abused and 12 controls. The gene was not altered in either of these groups.In a way, the researchers said, the men were programmed to be more vulnerable to overwhelming feelings of despair.

The study is the latest in the growing field of epigenetics: how our environment, including the social trauma or chemical substances, affects how our genes do their job and ultimately how they affect behaviour."The implications at this stage are you want to identify these people and then probably offer them some sort of intervention," said study co-author Moshe Szyf, an epigeneticist in McGill's department of pharmacology and therapeutics.

The goal, Szyf said, would be to find drugs that could reverse the changes, but researchers don't yet know how to do so.
"Maybe we can create different interventions, say in adolescents, that will negate these negative impacts that have happened earlier," said Dr. Stan Kutcher, a psychiatrist specializing in adolescent mental health at Dalhousie University in Halifax, who was not involved in the research. "We don't know yet."

Like thermostat on high
Child abuse experts said the findings reinforce the importance of interventions to prevent abuse. If children are abused early, they are flooded with stress-related hormones such as cortisol and adrenaline, said Louise Newman, a professor of perinatal and infant psychiatry at the University of Newcastle in Australia. "This impacts directly on how the brain develops and the stress regulation mechanism. It becomes highly stressed so it's like setting the thermostat on high, setting up a system which regulates stress less efficiently," Newman said. "Also it impacts on the area which controls feelings, so they're more likely to be highly stressed, have difficulties with anger and emotions, and be prone to self-harm, anxiety, suicide and depression. It's not clear why some people overcome their past while others succumb to it.

Abuse survivor Glori Medrum, 35, of Edmonton, was eight when a relative began to sexually abuse her. By the time she was 12, the abuse was almost too much to bear, and she locked herself in a bathroom with a razor. "Is it worth how this has made me feel, which was that nobody really cared about me?" she recalled. Medrum said she was in "survival mode" then, and now her life is about living with no regrets.

A common narrative
At the Distress Centres of Toronto, childhood abuse is a common narrative among callers. "I don't want people to feel that genetics is their destiny, that there is some hope available if we can understand why some people are able to manage," said Karen Letofsky of the centre.

The samples of tissue used in the study came from the Quebec Suicide Brain Bank, which houses the brains — donated by families for the purposes of research — of about 200 people who died from suicide or other causes. The research was funded by the Canadian Institutes for Health Research and the U.S. National Institute of Child Health and Development.

http://www.cbc.ca/canada/montreal/story/2009/02/23/child-abuse-brain.html?ref=rss


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#277197 - 02/25/09 09:02 PM Re: Scars of child abuse reach down to genetic level [Re: October]
Trucker51 Offline
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MaleSurvivor

Registered: 05/20/08
Posts: 2826
Loc: Denver, CO
This part is really interesting to me. I suffered from a lot of those symptoms in my teenage years into my 20s, and my symptoms were misdiagnosed as my having a bad attitude, and the remedy popular in that era was kicking me out of school or firing me from more than a few jobs. I have seen these symptoms in lots of other young people and I knew in my heart but couldn't really prove anything. This study provides some science to back-up my intuitions with.

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If children are abused early, they are flooded with stress-related hormones such as cortisol and adrenaline, said Louise Newman, a professor of perinatal and infant psychiatry at the University of Newcastle in Australia. "This impacts directly on how the brain develops and the stress regulation mechanism. It becomes highly stressed so it's like setting the thermostat on high, setting up a system which regulates stress less efficiently," Newman said. "Also it impacts on the area which controls feelings, so they're more likely to be highly stressed, have difficulties with anger and emotions, and be prone to self-harm, anxiety, suicide and depression. It's not clear why some people overcome their past while others succumb to it.

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Great first effort October. Glad that you found us. Hope that we can be of help to you. I think that you will find us to be a caring and understanding bunch of guys. We are all here working together toward our common goal, which is freedom for us all.

Welcome to MS,

Mark

_________________________
"We stay here, we die here. We've got to keep moving". Trucker Mark



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#277215 - 02/25/09 10:40 PM Re: Scars of child abuse reach down to genetic level [Re: Trucker51]
pluckmemory Offline


Registered: 03/27/08
Posts: 562
Does anyone get REALLY upset and jump a mile when a stranger bumps into them? I notice I have a more extreme reaction to this compared with my friends who were not molested.


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#277224 - 02/25/09 10:59 PM Re: Scars of child abuse reach down to genetic level [Re: pluckmemory]
joelRT Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor


Registered: 09/11/08
Posts: 1357
Loc: Québec, Canada
.



Edited by joelRT (03/15/09 01:46 AM)
Edit Reason: leaving
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My Story 2
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#277257 - 02/26/09 02:36 AM Re: Scars of child abuse reach down to genetic level [Re: joelRT]
Trucker51 Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 05/20/08
Posts: 2826
Loc: Denver, CO
Pluckmemory:

Hyper-sensitivity to loud noises or a hyper-startle response to getting bumped into are common symptoms of suffering CSA and other types of violent abuse. There is a list of symptoms that parents and caregivers miss in Mic Hunter's book ABUSED BOYS starting late on page 49 and going through page 50. If you haven't read this book yet I hardly recommend it. This book was the first that I ever read on the subject nearly 20 years ago, and its author was one of my therapists more than 10 years ago.

Boy am I glad that we just shake hands here!!!

Mark

_________________________
"We stay here, we die here. We've got to keep moving". Trucker Mark



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#277270 - 02/26/09 08:44 AM Re: Scars of child abuse reach down to genetic level [Re: October]
Sans Logos Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 05/31/03
Posts: 5791
Loc: in my own world in pittsburgh,...
check out dr. timothy leary's 8 circuit model of consciousness.

take it with a grain of salt, but i have found understanding the imprinting process have opened my 'i' big and wide to understanding the evolutionary process of my self construction, particularly how my own particular imprinting guided and shaped the process from the shadows.

the idea that abuse experiences profoundly effect the brain chemistry and neural development is not new, but it seems be coming up here a lot lately.

i love it!

ever read prometheus rising??

ron

_________________________
  1. the past
  2. ReClaiming Now
  3. advocacy


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#277303 - 02/26/09 01:17 PM Re: Scars of child abuse reach down to genetic level [Re: Sans Logos]
Dan99 Offline


Registered: 06/18/07
Posts: 100
Loc: Washington DC
Oops. I posted this article in the other forum. Sorry for the double post.

I know this is such a huge factor in the way I behave that I'm really glad to see it being researched. It would be great if they found a way to repair the damage that's done.

_________________________
Work like you don't need the money;
dance like no one is watching;
sing like no one is listening;
love like you've never been hurt;
and live life every day as if it were your last.

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#277312 - 02/26/09 01:37 PM Re: Scars of child abuse reach down to genetic level [Re: Dan99]
Sans Logos Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 05/31/03
Posts: 5791
Loc: in my own world in pittsburgh,...
dan, this makes me think of the earlier thread where people are weighing in on the differences between healing and recovery.

regarding this:
Quote:
It would be great if they found a way to repair the damage that's done.


my experience is that this IS the work of recovery. understandings leading to more questions leading to more doors leading to more questions etc. healing happens as the old myths, the old imprints dissolve, and we begin to rebuild ourselves with more enlightened understanding.

unfortunately, the process is so unique to each individual that it can't really be formulated.

some people use a therapeutic guide to help them to discover and implement the process for them. for me it is just cheaper to debunk the delusions on my own.

just my thoughts on it, confused

ron

_________________________
  1. the past
  2. ReClaiming Now
  3. advocacy


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#277485 - 02/27/09 06:22 PM Re: Scars of child abuse reach down to genetic level [Re: Sans Logos]
michael banks Offline


Registered: 06/12/08
Posts: 1755
Loc: Mojave Desert, Ca
Ron,

Was not Dr. Timoth Leary the guy in the sixties who did acid. Whose motto was Turn on and drop out or some such thing?

Mike

_________________________
To own one's shadow is the highest moral act of a human.
-Robert Johnson-

"IT ought never be forgotten that the past is the parent of the future" John C. Calhoun

WOR Alumni Sequoia 2009

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#277508 - 02/27/09 09:11 PM Re: Scars of child abuse reach down to genetic level [Re: michael banks]
ComicBookGuy Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 02/08/09
Posts: 443
Loc: London, England
My abuse literally stunted my growth, I had to go overseas and generally have a complete change of environment before growing to my full height - aged 19, very late. Also I had nosebleeds and nailbiting around every anniversary, So these physical effects seem to back up the research in October's post.

There were other effects but those best match the CBC de>
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