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Vulnerability to Depression

From Cognitive Neuroscience to Prevention and Treatment

Rick E. Ingram, Ruth Ann Atchley, and Zindel Segal

Hardcovere-bookprint + e-book
June 7, 2011
ISBN 9781609182557
Price: $50.00
260 Pages
Size: 6" x 9"
July 7, 2011
ePub ?
Price: $50.00
260 Pages
print + e-book
Hardcover + e-Book (ePub) ?
Price: $100.00 $55.00
260 Pages

Providing a cutting-edge examination of the mechanisms underlying depression, this volume integrates important areas of research that have largely remained separate. The authors explore both the cognitive and neurological processes that make some people more vulnerable than others to developing depression and experiencing recurrent episodes. They also probe how these processes interact—how negative life experiences, maladaptive belief systems, and patterns of thinking may actually affect neural circuitry, and vice versa. Explaining sophisticated theory and research in an accessible style, the book highlights the implications for improving clinical practices and patient outcomes.

“The discussions of risk factors for depression onset...are original, well integrated, empirically defined, clearly operationalized, multidimensional, interdisciplinary, and succinct....References to the literature are well selected, thematic, and dimensional. Nonspecialists in a given area will gain considerable depth of understanding of theoretical and practical foundations of behavior through study of the well-integrated syndrome analyses that are presented here. Clinicians from medical and nonmedical specialties, theoreticians, experimental investigators from cognitive neuroscientific and psychopharmacological disciplines, and strict experimentalists will all find results from their disciplines to be clearly presented and well integrated theoretically with those from other specialties. This text can be readily understood by an interdisciplinary professional audience....A small volume that presents a thoroughly distilled and well-integrated compendium of clinical and empirical insights. It can be read relatively quickly, but it should be read several times if one wants to appreciate fully its model of interdisciplinary scholarship and collaboration....It is a splendid work that deserves a wide readership and wide emulation. Application of the theoretical models, clinical insights, and experimental methods that are exemplified in this fine volume will enhance the quality of theoretical and experimental work as well as the optimization of clinical care for those who are at risk for onset of depressive symptoms.”


“Ingram, Atchley, and Segal offer a thoughtful, wonderfully sophisticated, and nonetheless accessible account of vulnerability to depression. Never before has a book on depression so successfully integrated cognitive neuroscience and prevention/treatment research. This was the perfect team to do it! If you want a comprehensive, integrated account of the diverse work on depression vulnerability, this is the book you need.”

—Daniel R. Strunk, PhD, Department of Psychology, The Ohio State University

“This is an essential text for researchers, clinicians, and graduate students wanting a clear, up-to-date, multifaceted understanding of research into depression. Remarkable in lucidity, balance, and thoroughness, it puts recent cognitive and neurobiological findings into historical perspective, illuminates diverse conceptualizations and research strategies, highlights the strengths and limitations of various approaches, and provides clear avenues for further study. This is a 'must read' for anyone with a serious interest in understanding depression today.”

—Ronald D. Siegel, PsyD, Center for Mindfulness and Compassion, Harvard Medical School/Cambridge Health Alliance

“The question of what mechanisms underlie depression is crucial for understanding and treating this disorder. Answers have begun to emerge from both the cognitive and the neuroscience literatures. The time is right for synthesizing the cognitive, neuroscience, and treatment literatures so that an integrated approach to depression vulnerability can be formulated and prevention and management interventions can be optimized. Ingram, Atchley, and Segal provide a theoretically sophisticated, practical synthesis that will appeal to both researchers and clinicians.”

—Dan J. Stein, MD, PhD, Department of Psychiatry, University of Cape Town, South Africa, and Mt. Sinai School of Medicine, New York

“Ingram, Atchley, and Segal offer a well-written, jargon-free work that translates current, cutting-edge science into understandable terms and concepts. This book is informative for students and scholars alike. Well done!”

—Kenneth A. Dodge, PhD, Director, Center for Child and Family Policy, Duke University

Table of Contents

1. Depression: An Overview of a Public Health Problem

2. Why Vulnerability?

3. Cognitive–Clinical Science and Cognitive Neuroscience Approaches to Understanding Behavior

4. Methodological Strategies and Issues in the Study of Vulnerability to Depression

5. Theory and Data on Cognitive Vulnerability

6. Cognitive Neuroscience Data on Vulnerability

7. Cognitive and Cognitive Neuroscience Vulnerability to Depression

8. Depression Vulnerability and Clinical Therapeutics

9. Prevention Efforts Designed to Address Factors Underlying Depression Risk

10. The Vulnerable Person Revisited

About the Authors

Rick E. Ingram, PhD, is Professor of Psychology at the University of Kansas. His research focuses on cognitive functioning in emotional disorders, with a particular emphasis on the cognitive features of individuals at risk for depression. Dr. Ingram is a recipient of the New Researcher Award from the Association for Advancement of Behavior Therapy (now the Association for Behavioral and Cognitive Therapies) and the Distinguished Scientific Award for Early Career Contributions to Psychology from the American Psychological Association, and is a Division 12 Fellow of the American Psychological Association.

Ruth Ann Atchley, PhD, is Chair of the Department of Psychology and a member of the Cognitive and Clinical PhD Programs at the University of Kansas. Her research uniquely combines event-related-potential electrophysiological data with divided-visual-field research techniques to examine hemispheric differences in linguistic and other cognitive processes. Over the last 10 years, Dr. Atchley has investigated how neurolinguistic processes contribute to the negative cognitive bias seen in depressed individuals and those with chronic pain disorders.

Zindel V. Segal, PhD, is the Cameron Wilson Chair in Depression Studies and Head of the Mood and Anxiety Disorders Program in the Department of Psychiatry at the University of Toronto. He is also Head of the Cognitive Behaviour Therapy Unit at the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health. Dr. Segal has studied and published widely on psychological treatments for depression for more than 25 years. He and his colleagues have pioneered the combined use of mindfulness meditation and cognitive therapy as an effective relapse prevention treatment.


Practitioners and students in clinical psychology, psychiatry, and clinical social work; psychopathology researchers.

Course Use

Serves as a supplemental text in graduate-level courses such as Depression and Mood Disorders, Abnormal Psychology, and Psychopathology.