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Robert JohanssonUniversitetslektor, docent

Om mig

Jag forskar främst i fältet Artificiell Generell Intelligens (AGI). Vår forskning utgår från premissen att generell intelligens kan förstås på ett meningsfullt sätt som ett exempel på en sorts abstrakt responsmönster som kallas arbiträrt applicerbara relationsresponser (AARR). För en längre beskrivning av AARR och hur det kan relateras till AGI, se nedan för en länk till min artikel från 2019 om just detta:

Johansson, R. (2019). Arbitrarily applicable relational responding. In International Conference on Artificial General Intelligence (pp. 101-110). Springer, Cham. Länk till artikel.

Min forskning innefattar också klinisk psykologi, där jag forskar på en mängd olika saker. Jag har ett särskilt intresse för emotionsfokuserad psykoterapi. Min profil på Google Scholar innehåller flera representativa publikationer.



I urval från Stockholms universitets publikationsdatabas

  • Dismantling, optimising, and personalising internet cognitive behavioural therapy for depression

    2021. Toshi A. Furukawa (et al.). Lancet psychiatry 8 (6), 500-511


    Background: Internet cognitive behavioural therapy (iCBT) is a viable delivery format of CBT for depression. However, iCBT programmes include training in a wide array of cognitive and behavioural skills via different delivery methods, and it remains unclear which of these components are more efficacious and for whom.

    Methods: We did a systematic review and individual participant data component network meta-analysis (cNMA) of iCBT trials for depression. We searched PubMed, PsycINFO, Embase, and the Cochrane Library for randomised controlled trials (RCTs) published from database inception to Jan 1, 2019, that compared any form of iCBT against another or a control condition in the acute treatment of adults (aged ≥18 years) with depression. Studies with inpatients or patients with bipolar depressionwere excluded. We sought individual participant data from the original authors. When these data were unavailable, we used aggregate data. Two independent researchers identified the included components. The primary outcome was depression severity, expressed as incremental mean difference (iMD) in the Patient Health Questionnaire-9 (PHQ-9) scores when a component is added to a treatment. We developed a web app that estimates relative efficacies between any two combinations of components, given baseline patient characteristics. This study is registered in PROSPERO, CRD42018104683.

    Findings: We identified 76 RCTs, including 48 trials contributing individual participant data (11 704 participants) and 28 trials with aggregate data (6474 participants). The participants' weighted mean age was 42·0 years and 12 406 (71%) of 17 521 reported were women. There was suggestive evidence that behavioural activation might be beneficial (iMD −1·83 [95% credible interval (CrI) −2·90 to −0·80]) and that relaxation might be harmful (1·20 [95% CrI 0·17 to 2·27]). Baseline severity emerged as the strongest prognostic factor for endpoint depression. Combining human and automated encouragement reduced dropouts from treatment (incremental odds ratio, 0·32 [95% CrI 0·13 to 0·93]). The risk of bias was low for the randomisation process, missing outcome data, or selection of reported results in most of the included studies, uncertain for deviation from intended interventions, and high for measurement of outcomes. There was moderate to high heterogeneity among the studies and their components.

    Interpretation: The individual patient data cNMA revealed potentially helpful, less helpful, or harmful components and delivery formats for iCBT packages. iCBT packages aiming to be effective and efficient might choose to include beneficial components and exclude ones that are potentially detrimental. Our web app can facilitate shared decision making by therapist and patient in choosing their preferred iCBT package.

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  • Emotional Processing and Its Association to Somatic Symptom Change in Emotional Awareness and Expression Therapy for Somatic Symptom Disorder

    2021. Daniel Maroti (et al.). Frontiers in Psychology 12


    Objective: The aim of this study was to investigate emotional processing as a potential mediator in therapist-guided, internet-based Emotional Awareness and Expression Therapy (I-EAET) for somatic symptom disorder, using data from a previously published pilot study.

    Methods: Participants (N = 52) engaged in a 9-week I-EAET treatment. Before treatment and each week during treatment (i.e., 10 weekly measurements), emotional processing was assessed with the Emotional Processing Scale-25 (EPS-25), which contains five subscales, and somatic symptoms were assessed with the Patient Health Questionnaire-15 (PHQ-15).

    Results: Mediation analyses using linear mixed models showed that two EPS-25 subscales—Signs of Unprocessed Emotions and Impoverished Emotional Experience—were uniquely associated with somatic symptom reduction. The proportion of the mediated effect was 0.49, indicating that about half of the total association of the PHQ-15 with symptoms was accounted for by the two EPS-25 subscales.

    Conclusion: This preliminary mediation analysis suggests that improved emotional processing is associated with change in somatic symptoms in I-EAET. However, randomized controlled and comparison trials are needed to establish that I-EAET creates the change in emotional processing and that such changes are specific to I-EAET.

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  • Healthcare cost reduction and psychiatric symptom improvement in posttraumatic stress disorder patients treated with intensive short-term dynamic psychotherapy

    2021. Hannah Roggenkamp (et al.). European Journal of Trauma & Dissociation 5 (3)


    Introduction: Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is associated with significant psychiatric morbidity and high healthcare costs. Objective: The aim of this pilot study was to evaluate changes in healthcare costs and general psychiatric symptom severity in patients with PTSD following intensive short-term dynamic psychotherapy (ISTDP).

    Method: Healthcare services cost and utilization data were compiled at intake, prior to starting ISTDP and then assessed annually for three years thereafter. Two validated self-report scales, the Brief Symptom Inventory and the Inventory of Interpersonal Problems, were administered at intake and termination.

    Results: Results showed significant reductions in physician costs and physician visits at one-year post-treatment, with these persisting over the three-year follow-up period. There were also large but statistically non-significant reductions in hospital costs. At termination, self-reported psychiatric symptoms and interpersonal problems were reduced.

    Conclusion: These preliminary findings suggest that ISTDP may lead to healthcare cost reductions and general psychiatric symptom improvement in patients with PTSD, with healthcare utilization benefits maintained at long-term follow up. Future research directions were discussed.

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  • Individually tailored Internet-delivered cognitive-behavioral therapy for survivors of intimate partner violence

    2021. Gerhard Andersson (et al.). Internet Interventions 26


    Intimate partner violence (IPV) is a serious public health concern worldwide and defined as behavior performed by spouses or other intimate partners that causes physical, sexual, or psychological harm. Internet-delivered cognitive-behavioral therapy (ICBT) may be particularly useful for survivors of IPV for several reasons, including barriers pertaining to limited community recourses and treatment availability, safety concerns, and issues of stigma, guilt and shame, which may prevent members of this population from seeking help via face-to-face interactions. However, Internet interventions are lacking. The primary aim of the present randomized controlled pilot trial was to explore the feasibility of ICBT as guided self-help individually tailored to the predominant symptomatology of PTSD or depression in survivors of IPV. A second aim was to conduct a preliminary evaluation exploring the short- and long-term effects of the treatment in comparison to a waitlist control condition. Results showed that the treatment was feasible. Attrition rate was low (9.4%), and participants were satisfied with treatment. However, treatment adherence was moderate in terms of completed modules (62.5%). Results of the preliminary evaluation of treatment effects showed large and statistically significant between-group effect sizes (Cohen's d = 0.86–1.08) on some measures of PTSD and depression at post assessment, favoring the treatment condition. However, there were no effects on other measures. At follow-up assessment, when the control condition had received delayed treatment, there were large and statistically significant within-group effect sizes (d = 0.96–1.48) on measures of PTSD, depression and anxiety, and small effects (d = 0.48) on a measure of quality of life. The results of the present pilot study are promising and warrant further research on ICBT for this population.

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  • Internet-Administered Emotional Awareness and Expression Therapy for Somatic Symptom Disorder With Centralized Symptoms

    2021. Daniel Maroti (et al.). Frontiers in Psychiatry 12


    Background: There is growing evidence that trauma, psychosocial conflict, and difficulties with emotional processing contribute to centralized somatic symptoms. Emotional Awareness and Expression Therapy (EAET) was developed to address these factors and reduce symptoms, and EAET has shown efficacy in face-to-face formats. No trial of an internet-delivered EAET (I-EAET) exists, however, so we developed such an intervention and conducted an uncontrolled feasibility and potential efficacy trial of I-EAET for patients with Somatic Symptom Disorder (SSD) with centralized symptoms (SSD-CS).

    Method: After screening potential participants, a sample of 52 patients (50 women, two men; age M = 49.6, SD = 11.9) diagnosed with SSD-CS initiated treatment. I-EAET consisted of nine weekly modules focused on psychoeducation, emotional awareness and exposure, and anxiety regulation with self-compassion. Therapists communicated with each patient by email for about 20 min per week during treatment, answering questions and giving feedback on homework assignments. Patients completed measures of somatic symptoms, depression, anxiety, trauma-related symptoms, and functional disability before treatment and again at post-treatment and 4-month follow-up.

    Results: A large reduction in somatic symptoms (PHQ-15) occurred pre-to post-treatment (d = 1.13; 95% CI: 0.84-1.47) which was fully maintained at 4-month follow-up (d = 1.19; 95% CI: 0.88-1.56). Twenty-three percent of the patients at post-treatment and 27% at follow-up achieved a 50% or greater reduction in somatic symptoms, and about 70% achieved a minimally important clinical difference. In addition, at post-treatment, there were small to medium reductions (d's from 0.33 to 0.72) in anxiety (GAD-7), depression (PHQ-9), trauma-related symptoms (PCL-5), and functional disability (Sheehan Disability Scale). For all of these secondary outcomes, improvements were slightly to substantially larger at follow-up than at post-treatment (d's from 0.46 to 0.80).

    Conclusion: I-EAET appears to be a feasible treatment for adults with SSD and centralized symptoms, resulting in substantial and durable improvement not only in somatic symptoms but in other psychiatric symptoms and functioning. Controlled trials are needed determine the effects of I-EAET specifically and how this approach compares to face-to-face EAET and to other internet-delivered treatments, such as cognitive-behavioral interventions. Research should also identify treatment responders and mechanisms of change in EAET.

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  • Internet-Based Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Depression

    2021. Eirini Karyotaki (et al.). JAMA psychiatry 78 (4), 361-371


    Importance: Personalized treatment choices would increase the effectiveness of internet-based cognitive behavioral therapy (iCBT) for depression to the extent that patients differ in interventions that better suit them.

    Objective: To provide personalized estimates of short-term and long-term relative efficacy of guided and unguided iCBT for depression using patient-level information.

    Data Sources: We searched PubMed, Embase, PsycInfo, and Cochrane Library to identify randomized clinical trials (RCTs) published up to January 1, 2019.

    Study Selection: Eligible RCTs were those comparing guided or unguided iCBT against each other or against any control intervention in individuals with depression. Available individual patient data (IPD) was collected from all eligible studies. Depression symptom severity was assessed after treatment, 6 months, and 12 months after randomization.

    Data Extraction and Synthesis: We conducted a systematic review and IPD network meta-analysis and estimated relative treatment effect sizes across different patient characteristics through IPD network meta-regression.

    Main Outcomes and Measures: Patient Health Questionnaire–9 (PHQ-9) scores.

    Results: Of 42 eligible RCTs, 39 studies comprising 9751 participants with depression contributed IPD to the IPD network meta-analysis, of which 8107 IPD were synthesized. Overall, both guided and unguided iCBT were associated with more effectiveness as measured by PHQ-9 scores than control treatments over the short term and the long term. Guided iCBT was associated with more effectiveness than unguided iCBT (mean difference [MD] in posttreatment PHQ-9 scores, −0.8; 95% CI, −1.4 to −0.2), but we found no evidence of a difference at 6 or 12 months following randomization. Baseline depression was found to be the most important modifier of the relative association for efficacy of guided vs unguided iCBT. Differences between unguided and guided iCBT in people with baseline symptoms of subthreshold depression (PHQ-9 scores 5-9) were small, while guided iCBT was associated with overall better outcomes in patients with baseline PHQ-9 greater than 9.

    Conclusions and Relevance: In this network meta-analysis with IPD, guided iCBT was associated with more effectiveness than unguided iCBT for individuals with depression, benefits were more substantial in individuals with moderate to severe depression. Unguided iCBT was associated with similar effectiveness among individuals with symptoms of mild/subthreshold depression. Personalized treatment selection is entirely possible and necessary to ensure the best allocation of treatment resources for depression.

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  • Internet-based cognitive behavior therapy for depression, social anxiety disorder, and panic disorder

    2021. Andrea N. Niles (et al.). Behaviour Research and Therapy 136


    Though therapist-guided Internet-based cognitive behavior therapy (ICBT) appears to be efficacious for depression, social anxiety disorder, and panic disorder, relatively little is known about real-world settings and predictors of treatment effects derived from cognitive-behavioral theory. We examined treatment effectiveness and predictors of improvement in a prospective cohort study where patients took part in 10 weeks of ICBT for depression (n = 114), social anxiety disorder (n = 150), or panic disorder (n = 106) at a teaching clinic. Patients self-reported symptoms before, during, and after treatment. Effect sizes were large for improvement in the primary symptom domain of each treatment group: depression (d = 1.48), social anxiety disorder (d = 1.01), and panic disorder (d = 1.15). In ICBT for depression, having no previous experience of psychological treatment (r = 0.21), and more frequent baseline negative automatic thoughts (r = 0.20) predicted larger improvement. In ICBT for panic disorder, having more baseline safety behaviors (r = 0.25) predicted larger improvement. Predictors remained significant when baseline symptoms were included in the statistical models. We conclude that ICBT can be effective in a real-world teaching clinic, and that patients with greater deficits at baseline benefit the most.

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  • Affect-Focused Psychodynamic Internet-Based Therapy for Adolescent Depression

    2020. Karin Lindqvist (et al.). Journal of Medical Internet Research 22 (3)


    Background: Adolescent depression is one of the largest health issues in the world and there is a pressing need for effective and accessible treatments.

    Objective: This trial examines whether affect-focused internet-based psychodynamic therapy (IPDT) with therapist support is more effective than an internet-based supportive control condition on reducing depression in adolescents.

    Methods: The trial included 76 adolescents (61/76, 80% female; mean age 16.6 years), self-referred via an open access website and fulfilling criteria for major depressive disorder. Adolescents were randomized to 8 weeks of IPDT (38/76, 50%) or supportive control (38/76, 50%). The primary outcome was self-reported depressive symptoms, measured with the Quick Inventory of Depressive Symptomatology for Adolescents (QIDS-A17-SR). Secondary outcomes were anxiety severity, emotion regulation, self-compassion, and an additional depression measure. Assessments were made at baseline, postassessment, and at 6 months follow-up, in addition to weekly assessments of the primary outcome measure as well as emotion regulation during treatment.

    Results: IPDT was significantly more effective than the control condition in reducing depression (d=0.82, P=.01), the result of which was corroborated by the second depression measure (d=0.80, P<.001). IPDT was also significantly more effective in reducing anxiety (d=0.78, P<.001) and increasing emotion regulation (d=0.97, P<.001) and self-compassion (d=0.65, P=.003). Significantly more patients in the IPDT group compared to the control group met criteria for response (56% vs 21%, respectively) and remission (35% vs 8%, respectively). Results on depression and anxiety symptoms were stable at 6 months follow-up. On average, participants completed 5.8 (SD 2.4) of the 8 modules.

    Conclusions: IPDT may be an effective intervention to reduce adolescent depression. Further research is needed, including comparisons with other treatments.

    Trial Registration: International Standard Randomised Controlled Trial Number (ISRCTN) 16206254;

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  • Internet-based psychodynamic therapy vs cognitive behavioural therapy for social anxiety disorder

    2020. Tomas Lindegaard (et al.). Internet Interventions 20


    Objective: Both Internet-delivered cognitive behavioural therapy (ICBT) and Internet-delivered psychodynamic psychotherapy (IPDT) have shown promise in the treatment of social anxiety disorder (SAD). However, little is known about client preferences and what predicts treatment outcome. The objective of the present pilot study was to examine preference for ICBT versus IPDT in the treatment of SAD and whether participants' preference strength and therapeutic alliance predicted treatment response. Further, we also investigated the effect of the two treatments, including 6-months follow-up.

    Method: Thirty-six participants were instructed to choose between either IPDT or ICBT based on a brief description. Both treatments were 10 weeks long. Liebowitz Social Anxiety Scale – Self Report was used as the primary outcome measure.

    Results: IPDT (N = 23; 63.9%) was preferred more often than ICBT (N = 13; 36.1%), but the difference did not reach statistical significance (p = .10). Preference strength did not predict the treatment effect but therapeutic alliance did. The observed within-group effects for the treatment period were d = 0.40 [−0.21, 0.99] for the IPDT group and d = 0.53 [−0.29, 1.31] for the ICBT group. An intention-to-treat (ITT) analysis revealed no significant difference between the two treatments on any outcome measure at either post-treatment or at six months follow-up.

    Conclusion: The present pilot study did not find a difference in preference for IPDT or ICBT in the treatment of SAD and both treatments resulted in small to moderate improvements in symptoms of SAD. Preference strength might not predict treatment effect, but this needs to be tested in larger studies.

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  • Internet-based psychodynamic versus cognitive behaviour therapy for adolescents with depression

    2020. Jakob Mechler (et al.). Trials 21 (1)


    Background: Adolescent depression is a common mental health problem and there is an urgent need for effective and accessible treatments. Internet-based interventions solve many obstacles for seeking and receiving treatment, thus increasing access to effective treatments. Internet-based cognitive behavioural therapy (ICBT) for adolescent depression has demonstrated efficacy in previous trials. In order to broaden the range of evidence-based treatments for young people, we evaluated a newly developed affect-focused Internet-based psychodynamic treatment (IPDT) in a previous study with promising results. The purpose of the planned study is to evaluate the efficacy of IPDT for adolescent depression in a non-inferiority trial, comparing it to ICBT.

    Methods: The study will employ a parallel randomized non-inferiority design (ratio 1:1; n = 270). Eligible participants are adolescents 15–19 years suffering from depression. The primary hypothesis is that IPDT will be non-inferior to ICBT in reducing depressive symptoms from pre-treatment to end of treatment. Secondary research questions include comparing outcomes of IPDT and ICBT regarding anxiety symptoms, emotion regulation and self-compassion. Additional data will be collected to evaluate cost-effectiveness as well as investigating predictors, moderators and mediators of outcome. In addition, we will examine long-term outcome up to 1 year after end of treatment. Diagnostic interviews with MINI 7.0 will be used to establish primary diagnosis of depression as well as ruling out any exclusion criteria. Both treatments consist of eight modules over 10 weeks, complemented with therapist support through text messages and weekly chat sessions. Primary outcome measure is the Quick Inventory of Depressive Symptomatology in Adolescents Self-Rated (QIDS-A17-SR). Primary outcome will be analysed using data from all participants entering the study using a multilevel growth curve strategy based on the weekly measurements of QIDS-A17-SR. The non-inferiority margin is defined as d = 0.30.

    Discussion: This trial will demonstrate whether IPDT is non-inferior to ICBT in the treatment of adolescent depression. The study might therefore broaden the range of evidence-based treatment alternatives for young people struggling with depression. Further analyses of data from this trial may increase our knowledge about “what works for whom” and the pathways of change for two distinct types of interventions.

    Trial registration: ISRCTN12552584, Registered on 13 August 2019.

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