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Biased interpretation in paranoia and its modification

Savulich, George, Edwards, Annabel, Assadi, Sara, Guven, Husniye, Leathers-smith, Emily, Shergill, Sukhi S., Yiend, Jenny (2020) Biased interpretation in paranoia and its modification. Journal of Behavior Therapy and Experimental Psychiatry, 69 . Article Number 101575. ISSN 0005-7916. (doi:10.1016/j.jbtep.2020.101575) (The full text of this publication is not currently available from this repository. You may be able to access a copy if URLs are provided) (KAR id:96378)

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Background and objectives: Cognitive models of psychosis implicate interpretation biases as one of the mechanisms involved in the formation and maintenance of symptoms. First we measured the strength of association between interpretation biases and psychosis-relevant traits. Next we manipulated these biases and quantified the effects of doing so on psychosis-relevant outcomes. Methods: Experiment 1 used two measures of interpretation bias in a healthy sample (n = 70). Experiment 2 used a novel cognitive bias modification procedure (CMB-pa) in individuals with moderate trait paranoia (n = 60). Results: Experiment 1 revealed that over a third of the variance in interpretation bias could be explained by the combined effect of trait measures of paranoia/psychosis. In Experiment 2, CBM-pa produced training-congruent changes in the interpretation of new ambiguous information and influenced the interpretation, attribution and distress associated with a real-life social event. Limitations: The potentially confounding effects of elevated anxiety and depression on interpretation bias and the restricted range of outcome measures to assess the wider effects of CBM-pa. Conclusions: These studies are consistent with interpretation biases contributing to the maintenance of paranoia. CBM-pa could next be adapted and evaluated to test its efficacy as a therapeutic intervention.

Item Type: Article
DOI/Identification number: 10.1016/j.jbtep.2020.101575
Uncontrolled keywords: Cognitive bias modification, Information processing, Interpretation bias, Paranoia
Subjects: R Medicine
Divisions: Divisions > Division of Natural Sciences > Kent and Medway Medical School
Funders: King's College London (
Depositing User: Rachael Heller
Date Deposited: 28 Sep 2022 15:16 UTC
Last Modified: 04 Mar 2024 19:53 UTC
Resource URI: (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)

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