Associated Brain Alterations and Future Suicide Ideation in Female Adolescents and Young Adults with Mood Disorders

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In this Papers Podcast, Lejla Colic and Dr. Hilary Blumberg discuss their co-authored JCPP Advances paper ‘Brain grey and white matter structural associations with future suicidal ideation and behaviors in adolescent and young adult females with mood disorders’ (

There is an overview of the paper, methodology, key findings, and implications for practice.

Discussion points include;

  • The age range included in the study.
  • The significance of females with future suicide ideation and behaviours having shown decreases in cortical thickness, as well as some other differences in brain regions observing emotional and behavioural regulation.
  • The importance of cortical thickness.
  • The origins of these neurobiological differences – are they genetic, environmental, developmental, or some combination of all of these?
  • The reason for focusing on young adult and adolescent females, and how these findings are relevant to males.
  • How this research can be translated into practice to better identify and support adolescents at risk of suicidal ideation and behaviours.

In this series, we speak to authors of papers published in one of ACAMH’s three journals. These are The Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry (JCPP)The Child and Adolescent Mental Health (CAMH) journal; and JCPP Advances.

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Lejla Colic
Lejla Colic

Lejla is a junior group leader at the Jena University Clinic since April 2021. Her main research interest are stress response dynamics in youth and adulthood, effects of childhood adversity on the variability of the response dynamics measured with neuroimaging techniques and how the latter contribute to the onset and course of mood disorders. She is moreover studying association between childhood adversity and emergence of suicidal thoughts and behaviors with multimodal neuroimaging.

Dr. Hilary Blumberg
Dr. Hilary Blumberg

Dr. Hilary Patricia Blumberg is the John and Hope Furth Professor of Psychiatric Neuroscience, Professor of Psychiatry, Radiology and Biomedical Imaging and in the Child Center, and Director of the Mood Disorders Research Program, at the Yale School of Medicine. Dr. Blumberg’s research is devoted to understanding the brain circuitry differences that underlie mood disorders across the lifespan, with a focus on bipolar disorder and on suicide prevention. She directs the Mood Disorders Research Program at Yale that brings together a multi-disciplinary group of scientists to study the genetic, developmental and environmental factors that cause mood disorders to develop new methods for early detection, more effective interventions, and prevention of the disorders and their associated high risk for suicide. This research includes the use of new state-of-the-art brain scanning methods. She is a fellow of the American Psychiatric Association and of the American College of Neuropsychopharmacology and a member of the Society of Biological Psychiatry. (Bio from Yale School of Medicine)

Transcript (coming soon)


Really interesting and helpful podcast for professionals working with children and young people for a variety of reasons for example teachers, social workers and paediatric nurses. In addition to the reasons that the professionals are working with them, those children and young people (cyp) are also living with suicidal ideation and behaviours and so need the professionals to have some knowledge and strategies so they can support the cyp fully. Thank you.

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