Biological Explanations of Schizophrenia

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What is the main assumptions of the biological explanation?
All mental disorders have a physical cause.
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How can family studies be used?
Look to identify whether biological relatives are more likely to be affected by SZ than non-relatives.
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What did Kindler et al find?
First degree relatives 18x more likely to be at risk of SZ.
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How can twin studies be used?
Allow researchers to investigate contributions of genetic and environmental factors.
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What do high concordance rates in monozygotics suggest?
A genetic contribution towards the onset of SZ.
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What did Joseph et al find?
Compared monozygotic twins (they had a concordance rate of 40%) with dizygotic twins (rate of 7.4%)
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What does the dopamine hypothesis state?
Messages from neurones that trasmit dopamine fire too easily/too often, leading to symptoms of SZ
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What levels of dopamine do SZ's have?
Abnormally high levels of D2 receptors on recieving neurones, resulting in more dopamine binding, and more neurones firing.
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Where has the role of dopamine been highlighted?
In amphetamines (dopamine agonists). They cause stimulation of dopamine, thus symptoms of SZ.
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What is a major flaw for twin studies?
The assumption that the environments shared between monozygotic twins and dizygotic twins are the same.
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What other factors can contribute towards the higher rate of SZ among those more closely related?
Psychological factors; similiar learning environments; similar behaviour --> which may then be seen as SZ symptoms
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Who provides supportive evidence for genetics?
Brain Scans by Torrey et al and Bornstein et al
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What can be used as a line of argument for brain scans?
Enlarged ventricles are the result of sufferers having SZ rather than causing it. (CAUSE AND EFFECT)
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What is a flaw for the dopamine hypothesis?
Drugs used to reduce dopamine can increase them as the body compensates for the deficiency.
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What are the 2 main IDA points to use?
Reductionism & Determinism
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How can evolutionary approaches be used in AO2?
Price et al suggests that SZ being found in tribes can be explained through evolutionary terms. SZ personality could split up tribes when they reached a large size to deal with lack of resources.
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How can you use a line of argument for the evolutionary approach AO2 point?
Cannot prove scientific theory with evolutionary explanations --> undermines biological explanations.
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How can family studies be used?

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Look to identify whether biological relatives are more likely to be affected by SZ than non-relatives.

Card 3

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What did Kindler et al find?

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Card 4

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How can twin studies be used?

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Card 5

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What do high concordance rates in monozygotics suggest?

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