Persecutory ideation (PI), or a continuum of thoughts related to harm from others, is elevated in a range of psychiatric conditions and in up to 20% of the general population. These thoughts can range from slightly elevated concerns about threats, to the distressing and disruptive delusions that are common in schizophrenia-spectrum disorders.
Recent developments in mobile technology allow – for the first time – a real-time, real-place window into the dynamic emergence of PI. The project will remotely recruit 200 individuals both online and in-person with clinically significant persecutory ideation to engage with an integrated mobile health assessment system combining brief self-report and passive sensors for one month. The research team will explore these data to identify potential factors associated with PI emergence, maintenance, and exacerbation as well as potential targets for intervention development. Recruiting individuals remotely and online also provides the opportunity to compare individuals with PI who seek treatment to those who do not, examining potential demographics, clinical characteristics, or beliefs that determine help-seeking in this population.
Funding by: National Institute of Mental Health R01MH112641-03S2 and the Brain and Behavior Foundation NARSAD Young Investigator Award to Dr. Ben Buck.