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Deutsch, J. (2001). The Toronto Chapter of Neuro-Psychoanalysis. Neuropsychoanalysis, 3(2):274.

(2001). Neuropsychoanalysis, 3(2):274

The Toronto Chapter of Neuro-Psychoanalysis

James Deutsch, M.D., Ph.D.

The Toronto Chapter began following a scientific meeting, which Dr. Solms attended in Toronto in May 2001. A number of us met following his talk. The group of professionals is quite heterogeneous, and includes clinicians with psychoanalytic backgrounds or interests, as well as previous careers or training in areas of the neurosciences. We are reaching out to include basic researchers who are interested in knowing more about psychoanalysis.

Our first meeting reviewed the interests of the various participants. Dr. James Deutsch summarized the April congress in New York, which focused on memory. In the second meeting, Dr. Deutsch presented process material on two patients, one with absence seizures in psychotherapy, the other with complex partial seizures in psychoanalysis. The discussion stimulated interest in thinking more about the gradations of consciousness and of ego states in such patients, and the possibility of paying greater clinical attention to patients in the midst of fluctuations in states of consciousness, whether from various seizures or in the process of electroconvulsive therapy. Some experience with the surprising developmental capacities of severely disabled children was reviewed, emphasizing the importance of resisting assumptions based on an incomplete understanding of brain function based on research which does not have a psychodynamic basis.

Further meetings will focus on specific, recently elucidated mechanisms, structures, and pathways, which may be substrates for phenomena that have been psychoanalytically investigated (e.g., hippocampus and familiarity and dreaming; cerebellum and regulation of integrative functions; and specific modulation of thalamic relays and cortical networks and defenses).

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