Browsing by Subject "psychopathy"

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  • Blakey, Robert; Askelund, Adrian D.; Boccanera, Matilde; Immonen, Johanna; Plohl, Nejc; Popham, Cassandra; Sorger, Clarissa; Stuhlreyer, Julia (2017)
    Neuroscience has identified brain structures and functions that correlate with psychopathic tendencies. Since psychopathic traits can be traced back to physical neural attributes, it has been argued that psychopaths are not truly responsible for their actions and therefore should not be blamed for their psychopathic behaviors. This experimental research aims to evaluate what effect communicating this theory of psychopathy has on the moral behavior of lay people. If psychopathy is blamed on the brain, people may feel less morally responsible for their own psychopathic tendencies and therefore may be more likely to display those tendencies. An online study will provide participants with false feedback about their psychopathic traits supposedly based on their digital footprint (i.e., Facebook likes), thus classifying them as having either above-average or below-average psychopathic traits and describing psychopathy in cognitive or neurobiological terms. This particular study will assess the extent to which lay people are influenced by feedback regarding their psychopathic traits, and how this might affect their moral behavior in online tasks. Public recognition of these potential negative consequences of neuroscience communication will also be assessed. A field study using the lost letter technique will be conducted to examine lay people's endorsement of neurobiological, as compared to cognitive, explanations of criminal behavior. This field and online experimental research could inform the future communication of neuroscience to the public in a way that is sensitive to the potential negative consequences of communicating such science. In particular, this research may have implications for the future means by which neurobiological predictors of offending can be safely communicated to offenders.
  • Vaurio, Olli; Lähteenvuo, Markku; Kautiainen, Hannu; Repo-Tiihonen, Eila; Tiihonen, Jari (2022)
    The mortality of female psychopaths has scarcely been investigated. To estimate the association between psychopathy and mortality, data from subjects having been in forensic psychiatric assessments at Niuvanniemi Hospital during 1984-1993 were linked to the data from the National Death Registry. Sixteen psychopathic females scoring 25 points or higher in the PCL-R scale (psychopaths) were followed up for a median (IQR) 21 (17-25) years and 41 offenders scoring
  • Suutarinen, Elina (Helsingin yliopisto, 2015)
    Objective Psychopathy is closely associated with criminality. There has been disagreement among researchers whether the psychopathy construct is applicable to children and adolescents. However, studies suggest that psychopathy is a life-long disorder. Biological, as well as environmental factors influence the development of psychopathic traits, although psychosocial risk factors of psychopathy - especially in the case of juveniles - are not well known. The first aim of the study was to examine whether adolescent's psychopathy can be predicted with seven familial and parental risk factors. The second aim was to examine whether adolescent's psychopathy can be predicted with cumulative risk. Methods The data included 14-19 year-old juvenile offenders (n=1293). Psychopathic traits were assessed with PCL: YV. Based on interviews with parents or other collateral reporters, five risk factors were assessed: parental mental problems, parental substance abuse, parental criminality, yearly household income and adolescent's history of social services. Parental monitoring and knowledge were assessed using The Parental Monitoring inventory. Cumulative risk was constructed dichotomizing each risk factor and then summing the dichotomous scores. The associations between risk factors and adolescent's psychopathic traits were examined with linear regression analysis. The association between cumulative risk and psychopathic traits were examined with ANOVA. Results and conclusions Parental mental problems, parental drug and alcohol problems, parental criminality, low parental monitoring, low parental knowledge and adolescent's history of social services predicted adolescent's psychopathy. However, after controlling the effects of other risk factors, only parental monitoring, parental knowledge and adolescent's history of social services remained significant predictors of psychopathy, as the effects of the other variables were explained by these three risk factors. Household income was not associated with adolescent's psychopathic traits. In addition, the more risk factors one had, the more he/she had psychopathic traits on average. This information can be applied in preventing psychopathy, improving treatment of psychopathy and reducing criminality.
  • Vaurio, Olli; Repo-Tiihonen, Eila; Kautiainen, Hannu; Tiihonen, Jari (2018)
    It is not known how mortality differs between psychopathic and nonpsychopathic individuals. We linked data from subjects having been in forensic mental examinations at Niuvanniemi Hospital during 1984–1993 to the data from the National Death Registry to estimate the association between psychopathy and mortality. One hundred psychopathic individuals scoring 25 or higher in the PCL-R scale were followed up for 20–30 years. Two control groups were used as follows: 178 offenders scoring less than 25 on the PCL-R, and sample of general population drawn from the Finnish National Statistics database. Results reveal that psychopaths die younger than the general population, and the causes of death are more violent than in the nonpsychopath control group. There was a significant positive correlation between PCL-R score and mortality, and the mortality among psychopaths was about fivefold when compared with general population.
  • Valkonen, Teemu (Helsingfors universitet, 2016)
    Objectives. A relatively small group of people are responsible for disproportionate amount of offenses which cause significant monetary and societal costs. It has been important to recognize different risk and protective factors for chronic offending in youth to develop effective treatment and preventive strategies. One subgroup of offenders who commit many offenses are individuals with high psychopathic traits. However, not all psychopathic individuals commit crimes and some seem well adjusted to society. High intelligence is considered as a protective factor from chronic offending. This study examines the relationship of psychopathic traits and intelligence on juvenile delinquency with seven-year long follow up design. Methods. The data of the study was employed from the Pathways to Desistance longitudinal study which material was collected in between 2000 - 2010. The sample included all male juvenile offenders (n=1170) from the cities of Phoenix and Philadelphia in the United States of America. The participants were 14 - 19 of age at the beginning of the study and 21 - 26 at the end. Psychopathic traits were assessed with PCL:YV and intelligence with WASI. The relationship of psychopathic traits and intelligence on delinquency was examined with binary logistic regression analysis. As well as the moderating effect of intelligence on the relationship between psychopathic traits and delinquency. Delinquency was assessed separately for violent and income related crimes based on the self-report of the participants with SRO method. Results and conclusions. High psychopathic traits were related to a higher risk for both violent and income offending in every measurement year of the seven year follow up. In addition, high psychopathic traits were related to a higher risk for faster rate of recidivism and to the continuity of criminal activity. Intelligence did not have either increasing or decreasing effect on delinquency and it did not have any moderating effect on the relationship between psychopathic traits and delinquency. However, further studies are needed to examine more closely the observed relationships, possible mediating factors and other risk and protective factors for crime. The results indicate that the risk and protective factors for delinquency in youth with high psychopathic traits needs to be intervened as early as possible to achieve effective treatment and preventive results.
  • Tiainen, Outi (Helsingfors universitet, 2015)
    Study goal: The goal of this study was to examine the association between psychopathic traits in juvenile delinquents and developmental factors. In previous studies the focus has been mainly on neurobiological etiological factors predicting psychopathic traits. Based on the limited amount of developmental research it was adequate to examine the impact of the affective tone in the parental-child relationship and especially mother's hostile parenting style to psychopathic traits. Additionally it was examined if socio-emotional development linking to early states of psychological development and affection, and emotional reactivity were linking to psychopathy. Methods: The original sample consisted of North American juvenile delinquents boys aged 14-19 years (k=1354) which was part of large a Pathways to Desistance survey. In this study the sample consisted of 1123 boys. Associations between psychopathic traits and other variables were first examined through correlational study and univariate analysis of variance. Secondly stepwise multiple regression analyses were conducted and finally discrimination analysis. For the discrimination analysis the sample was divided in two based on persons scored low and high in psychopathic traits (low<25, high=>25) for testing the strength of predictive variables emerged with regression analysis to discriminate persons accurately into classes low or high in psychopathy. Results and conclusions: Results showed that mother's hostile parenting style was significantly associated with psychopathic traits. Additionally socio-emotional development was significantly associated with psychopathic traits. Findings highlight that the more hostile is the mother-child relationship the higher will psychopathic traits be. Additionally low temperance with problems in impulse control and suppression of aggression predicted prevalence of high psychopathic traits. The hypothesis based on previous studies about associations between emotional reactivity and psychopathy didn't gain any significant relevance based on present study. Neither did emotional self-regulation connect to psychopathy with this sample in this study.