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Depression Research and Treatment
Volume 2012, Article ID 160905, 9 pages
Research Article

Predicting Depression with Psychopathology and Temperament Traits: The Northern Finland 1966 Birth Cohort

1Department of Psychiatry, Institute of Clinical Medicine, University of Oulu, P.O. Box 5000, 90014 Oulu, Finland
2Clinic of Psychiatry, Oulu University Hospital, Oulu, Finland
3Department of Chronic Disease Prevention, National Institute for Health and Welfare, Haartmaninkatu 8, 00251 Helsinki, Finland
4UCLA Center for Neurobehavioral Genetics, Semel Institute for Neuroscience and Human Behavior, Gonda Building, Room 3506, 695 Charles E. Young Drive South, Los Angeles, CA 90095, USA
5Institute of Health Sciences, University of Oulu, P.O. Box 5000, 90014 Oulu, Finland
6Unit of General Practice, Oulu University Hospital, 90029 Oulu, Finland
7Department of Mental Health and Substance Use Services, National Institute for Health and Welfare, P.O. Box 30, 00271 Helsinki, Finland
8Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, Imperial College London, London SW7 2AZ, UK
9Social Psychiatry Unit, School of Health Sciences, University of Tampere, 33014 Tampere, Finland
10Department of Psychiatry, Tampere University Hospital, Tampere, Finland
11Methadone Maintenance Clinic “Café Ersatz”, Münsterstraße 18, 53111 Bonn, Germany
12Department of Psychiatry, University of Eastern Finland and Kuopio University Hospital, P.O. Box 1777, 70211 Kuopio, Finland
13Department of Psychiatry, South-Savonia Hospital District, Mikkeli, Finland
14Department of Psychiatry, North Karelia Central Hospital, Joensuu, Finland
15Department of Psychiatry, SOSTERI, Savonlinna, Finland
16Department of Psychiatry, SOTE, Iisalmi, Finland
17Department of Psychiatry, Lapland Hospital District, Rovaniemi, Finland

Received 18 May 2012; Accepted 1 July 2012

Academic Editor: Toshinori Kitamura

Copyright © 2012 Jouko Miettunen et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


We studied the concurrent, predictive, and discriminate validity of psychopathology scales (e.g., schizotypal and depressive) and temperament traits for hospitalisations due to major depression. Temperament, perceptual aberration, physical and social anhedonia, Depression Subscale of Symptom Checklist (SCL-D), Hypomanic Personality Scale, Schizoidia Scale, and Bipolar II Scale were completed as part of the 31-year follow-up survey of the prospective Northern Finland 1966 Birth Cohort ( males). Several of the scales were related to depression. Concurrent depression was especially related to higher perceptual aberration (effect size when compared to controls, ), subsequent depression to high scores in SCL-D ( ). Physical anhedonia was lower in subjects with subsequent depression than those with other psychiatric disorders ( , nonsignificant). Participants with concurrent ( ) and subsequent ( ) depression had high harm avoidance compared to controls, while differences compared to other psychiatric patients were small. Subjects with depression differed from healthy controls in most of the scales. Many of the scales were useful predictors for future hospital treatments, but were not diagnosis-specific. High harm avoidance is a potential indicator for subsequent depression.