SSRIs Can Impair New Learning
About Anxiety


Researchers from Columbia University and the New York State Psychiatric Institute test the behavioral effects of SSRIs on Pavlovian fear conditioning in rats, and propose a model by which acute SSRI administration alters neural activity in the amygdala and hippocampus in a way that reduces anxiety symptoms but impairs the ability to learn new responses anxiety. Results appear in this month’s Neuroscience.

Abstract →

Burghardt, N., Bauer, E.; Acute and Chronic Effects of SSRI Treatment on Fear Conditioning: Implications for Underlying Fear Circuits. Neuroscience. Online June 1, 2013

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Kermit Cole
Kermit Cole, MFT, founding editor of Mad in America, works in Santa Fe, New Mexico as a couples and family therapist. Inspired by Open Dialogue, he works as part of a team and consults with couples and families that have members identified as patients. His work in residential treatment — largely with severely traumatized and/or "psychotic" clients — led to an appreciation of the power and beauty of systemic philosophy and practice, as the alternative to the prevailing focus on individual pathology. A former film-maker, he has undergraduate and master's degrees in psychology from Harvard University, as well as an MFT degree from the Council for Relationships in Philadelphia. He is a doctoral candidate with the Taos Institute and the Free University of Brussels. You can reach him at [email protected].