Maastricht Student Journal of Psychology and Neuroscience 2017-11-24T11:45:27+00:00 Peter van Ruitenbeek Open Journal Systems <p>The Maastricht Journal of Psychology and Neuroscience (MSJPN) aims to stimulate both bachelor and master students of our faculty in their academic education and, furthermore, provide a platform to publish both empirical work and reviews. Every year, one volume including the best papers is published.</p> Colofon 2017 2017-11-24T11:32:43+00:00 Laurien Nagels-Coune Colofon 2017 2017-11-24T11:25:24+00:00 ##submission.copyrightStatement## Letter from the Editorial Board 2017 2017-11-24T11:32:43+00:00 Laurien Nagels-Coune Letter from the Editorial Board 2017 2017-11-24T11:10:25+00:00 ##submission.copyrightStatement## Symptom Exaggeration and the Risk of Violent Recidivism in Forensic Patients 2017-11-24T11:45:27+00:00 Brenda Erens Research regarding the potential correlates of symptom exaggeration is sparse and can be of great relevance for those working in the forensic field. This study aimed to investigate whether exaggeration of symptoms is related to the risk of violent recidivism in forensic patients. Also, we investigated the link between symptom exaggeration and type of crime, type of drugs that have been used, and reason for dismissal. Forensic in- and outpatients (N = 96) completed the Structured Inventory of Malingered Symptomatology (SIMS), the Feigning Differentiation Scale (FEDS), and The Dissociative Experience Scale (DES). Furthermore, Historical, Clinical and Risk Management (HCR-20) scores at admission and dismissal and data about type of crime, type of drugs that have been used and reason for dismissal were collected. We expected symptom exaggeration to be related to 1. risk of violent recidivism, 2. a history of more serious offenses, 3. withdrawal or dismissal from treatment, and 4. a history of alcohol or hard drug abuse. We did not find any significant results to support our predictions. The biggest limitation of our study was the population of choice. It is suggested that future research should use multiple Symptom Validity Tests (SVTs) to investigate symptom exaggeration and remain cautious when including the newest HCR-20 version in research studies. 2017-11-24T10:54:58+00:00 ##submission.copyrightStatement## “Prevention is Better than Cure”: Can Exercise Prevent Dementia? 2017-11-24T11:32:43+00:00 Jenny Laura Rutten <p>Neurodegenerative disorders such as dementia are among the ones for which no cure is found yet. Nevertheless, physical exercise in older adults has shown to be beneficial for enhancement of cognitive functions such as memory and learning. The underlying mechanism of these beneficial effects is suggested to be neurogenesis in the dentate gyrus in the hippocampus, a brain structure essential for memory function. It is suggested that physical exercise and therewith neurogenesis can work as preventing factors for dementia. This paper examines whether physical exercise can prevent dementia. Despite the evidence for improvement of cognitive functioning and neurogenesis after physical exercise, this paper highlights a gap of knowledge in this field with regards to evidence and research on neurogenesis in humans.</p> 2017-11-24T11:17:06+00:00 ##submission.copyrightStatement## Lucid Dreaming: Neural Correlates and Practical Applications 2017-11-24T11:32:43+00:00 Klára Ertl <p lang="en-US">Lucid dreaming refers to realizing that one is dreaming while still in the dream. The prevalence is at least 17%, however little is known about the neural correlates and the practical utility of lucid dreams. The present review aims to fill this gap by reviewing evidence regarding these two areas of research. During lucid dreaming the frontal cortex becomes reactivated, which is not the case in normal REM sleep. This leads to executive functioning being present to some extent while asleep. There is more power in high frequencies and more coherence, which might make lucid dreaming a different brain state. It can be useful for solving creative problems, practicing skills, self-development and improving mental well-being. Many limitations need to be addressed in further research, such as small sample size and some neglected distinctions. As we will learn more about lucid dreaming, we will be able to study the link between neural correlates and applications, learn more about the brain and consciousness, and perhaps use it in therapy.</p> 2017-11-24T11:18:24+00:00 ##submission.copyrightStatement## Influence of Aerobic Exercise Induced Arousal on Neutral Word List Retrieval in Young Adults 2017-11-24T11:32:43+00:00 Dorien Blezer Shauna Cortenraad Janin Duijn Sofia Kalaai Alexandra Pres Anuschka Theden Lieveke Vonk <p>Previous studies have shown that arousal during the encoding and consolidation phases facilitates memory performance, and that arousing stimuli are better remembered. The current study shifts attention to physical arousal in the retrieval phase. This study was designed to test whether physically induced arousal can enhance memory for neutral words. Participants (N = 48) were randomized over a control and an aerobic condition. On the first day they memorized a list of 30 words, on the second day they either watched a documentary or executed an aerobic cycling exercise before performing a memory recall and recognition test for the words memorized at day one. Prior to the main analyses a manipulation check on subjective and physiological arousal was conducted and a successful condition manipulation was confirmed. However, the analyses showed no significant difference in memory performance between groups. Implications and limitations are discussed.</p><p><br /><em></em></p> 2017-11-24T11:19:44+00:00 ##submission.copyrightStatement## Effects of Methylphenidate on Memory and Attention in Healthy Adults 2017-11-24T11:32:43+00:00 Nadine Jansen <p>Methylphenidate (MPH) is the most prescribed medicinal drug for people diagnosed with attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder. However, the off-label use by healthy adults has increased over the last year due to the potential beneficial effects on cognitive performance. It causes augmented catecholaminergic neurotransmission by blocking dopamine and norepinephrine’s reuptake mainly in prefrontal cortex and striatum. The aim of this review was to examine the effects of MPH on memory and attention in healthy adults. The results were ambiguous, however, MPH’s beneficial effects on memory were found more consistently than effects on attention. In addition, individuals whose baseline performance was lower than average benefitted more than others. Optimal dosing seems to be dependent on the task and cognitive domain tested. The controversy about cognitive enhancing drugs arises when taking side effects, as well as ethical aspects, into consideration. Common adverse effects are insomnia and appetite loss. In conclusion, despite the positive effects of MPH on memory and attention, the use of MPH as cognitive enhancer in healthy adults is not recommended based on the lack of longitudinal studies and the risks of adverse effects. MPH self-medication is not recommended.</p> 2017-11-24T11:20:48+00:00 ##submission.copyrightStatement## Review: The Efficacy of Cannabidiol (CBD) as Potential Antipsychotic Medication 2017-11-24T11:32:43+00:00 Lilian Kloft <p>Psychotic disorders such as schizophrenia are widespread and severely disabling; however, current pharmacological treatments are unsatisfactory due to major side effects. The current review discusses the therapeutic potential of cannabidiol (CBD), a non-psychoactive component of cannabis, as an antipsychotic drug. Research lines including studies based on animal models of psychosis, human experimental studies, neuroimaging studies, epidemiological studies, and clinical studies are reviewed. The studies described provide empirical support for the antipsychotic effects of CBD and indicate reduced side effects, high tolerability, and superior cost-effectiveness compared to regular antipsychotic medication. It is concluded that CBD may prove a safe and attractive alternative treatment for psychotic conditions. However, current evidence largely stems from experimental, non-clinical studies. Large-scale randomized clinical trials are needed before this can be implemented in practice.</p> 2017-11-24T11:22:35+00:00 ##submission.copyrightStatement##