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Clinical Trial Summary

The purpose of this study is to evaluate the efficacy and mediators of change in Positive Affect Treatment, a psychotherapy specifically aimed at enhancing reward sensitivity in individuals with low positive affect (a core feature of anhedonia) in the context of depression or anxiety. Target enrollment is 100 male and female participants with low positive affect and depression or anxiety and impaired functioning, between the ages of 18 and 65 years, who will be randomized to either Positive Affect Treatment or Negative Affect Treatment (designed to reduce threat sensitivity). Participants will complete laboratory tests, psychiatric assessments, and self-report questionnaires as part of the study. The total length of participation is around 5 months.


Clinical Trial Description

Low positive affect in the context of depression or anxiety has been relatively resistant to pharmacological and psychological treatments. Newer treatments that focus upon positivity or reward sensitivity have shown promising results. As a replication and extension of a prior NIMH funded R61 phase trial, the purpose of this R33 phase randomized controlled trial is to evaluate the efficacy and mediators of change of Positive Affect Treatment (designed to augment reward sensitivity) for individuals with low positive affect in the context of depression or anxiety symptoms. Mediators (targets) include behavioral, cognitive, physiological and experiential measures of two reward targets: reward anticipation and response to reward attainment. Specificity of target engagement is assessed by comparison with Negative Affect Treatment, designed to reduce threat sensitivity, and by including behavioral, cognitive, physiological and experiential mediators (targets) that assess threat sensitivity. Clinical outcomes are assessed at baseline and either weekly or at Week 5, Week 10, Week 15 (post), and one-month follow-up. Mediators (targets) are assessed at baseline, Week 5, Week 10, Week 15 (post) and one-month follow-up. Mediational models will evaluate the degree to which change in the target measures explain change in the outcome measures. Target enrollment is 100 male and female participants with low positive affect and depression or anxiety and impaired functioning between the ages of 18 and 65 who will be randomized to Positive Affect Treatment or Negative Affect Treatment, each comprising 15 individual psychotherapy sessions. Participants will complete laboratory tests and psychiatric assessments and self-report questionnaires as part of the study. Total length of participation is around 5 months. ;


Study Design


Related Conditions & MeSH terms


NCT number NCT05203861
Study type Interventional
Source University of California, Los Angeles
Contact Shawn Wang, B.A.
Phone (209) 800-8930
Email [email protected]
Status Recruiting
Phase N/A
Start date November 22, 2021
Completion date May 31, 2024

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