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Professor Frances Rice

Professor Frances Rice

Professor of Developmental Psychopathology, Division of Psychological Medicine and Clinical Neurosciences

School of Medicine

Email
ricef2@cardiff.ac.uk
Telephone
+44 (0)29 2068 8384
Campuses
2.18, Hadyn Ellis Building, Maindy Road, Cardiff, CF24 4HQ
Users
Available for postgraduate supervision

Overview

I study the origins and development of depression and anxiety in young people.  I am interested in identifying causal risk and protective factors that can be targeted as part of interventions to prevent and treat depression and anxiety in young people.  I am also interested in the family and genetic influences on depression and anxiety, how these operate across development, and identifying ways of supporting families and children where a parent suffers from a common mental health problem.   I am interested in the relationship between school and mental health, and in transition points such as the transition to secondary school and between adolescence and adult life.  I use a range of research approaches including longitudinal prospective studies of families and young people and genetic epidemiology.

I am co-director of the Wolfson Centre for Young People’s Mental Health  a £10 million research centre dedicated to understanding anxiety and depression in young people.  

Biography

I studied Experimental Psychology at the University of Oxford.  Prior to my current position, I was Reader in the Research Department of Clinical, Educational and Health Psychology at University College London.

Publications

2021

2020

2019

2018

2017

2016

2015

2014

2013

2012

2011

2010

2009

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1999

Teaching

I supervise research projects for the intercalated Psychology and Medicine degree.  I supervise medical Student Selected Component projects.  I mentor undergraduate medical students.

I study the origins and development of depression and anxiety in young people.  I am interested in identifying causal risk and protective factors that can be targeted as part of interventions to prevent and treat depression and anxiety in young people.  I am also interested in the family and genetic influences on depression and anxiety, how these operate across development, and identifying ways of supporting families and children where a parent suffers from a common mental health problem.   I am interested in the relationship between school and mental health, and in transition points such as the transition to secondary school and between adolescence and adult life.  I use a range of research approaches including longitudinal prospective studies of families and young people and genetic epidemiology.

I am co-director of the Wolfson Centre for Young People’s Mental Health  a £10 million research centre dedicated to understanding anxiety and depression in young people.  

I supervise PhD students and research projects for the intercalated degree in psychology and medicine.  I run a selected student component experience week in year 2 on research in child and adolescent psychiatry and developmental psychology.  I also offer psychology placements. 

My current active grants are all on the topic of mental health in young people.

Current funded projects:

The Wolfson Centre for Young People’s Mental Health.  The Wolfson Foundation £10,000,000. Joint Principal Investigator (with Stephan Collishaw). 2020 - 2026.

Further development and feasibility trial of an online psychoeducational intervention for adolescent depression.  NIHR £617,465. Co-Applicant and primary supervisor to Rhys Bevan Jones. 2018 – 2022.   

Early-onset depression: characterising development and identifying risks. Medical Research Council £763,680. Principal Investigator. 2017 - 2021     

Social and economic consequences of health: causal inference methods and longitudinal, intergenerational data. The Health Foundation. £449,973. Co-Applicant. 2018 - 2021.     

Key selected papers:

Rice, F., Riglin, L., Thapar, A.K., Heron, J., Anney, R., O’Donovan, M.C., Thapar, A. (2018).  Characterising developmental trajectories and the role of psychiatric genetic risk variants to early onset depression.  JAMA Psychiatry, 76(3):306-313. Published online October 14, 2018. doi:10.1001/jamapsychiatry.2018.3338

Rice, F., Sellers, R., Hammerton, G., Eyre, O., Bevan-Jones, R., Thapar, A.K., Collishaw, S., Harold, G.T., Thapar, A. (2017). Antecedents of new-onset major depressive disorder in adolescence: a longitudinal familial high-risk study. JAMA Psychiatry, 74(2), 153-160.

Rahman, M.A., Todd, C., John, A., Tan, J., Kerr, M., Potter, R., Kennedy, J., Rice, F., Brophy, S (2018). School achievement as a predictor of depression or self-harm in adolescence- a linked education and health record study. British Journal of Psychiatry. DOI:  10.1192/bjp.2017.69

Rice, F., Ng-Knight, T., Riglin, L., Powell, V., McManus, I.C., Shelton, K.H., Frederickson, N. (in press) Pupil mental health, concerns and expectations about secondary school as predictors of adjustment across the transition to secondary school: A longitudinal multi-informant study. School Mental Health.

Hughes, A., Wade, K.H., Rice, F., Dickson, M., Davies, A., Davies, N.M., Howe, L.D. (2021) Common health conditions in childhood and adolescence, school absence, and educational attainment: Mendelian randomization study.  npj Science of Learning 61  https://doi.org/10.1038/s41539-020-00080-6

Selous C, Kelly-Irving M, Maughan B, Eyre O, Rice F, Collishaw S. (2019). Adverse childhood experiences and adult mood problems: evidence from a five-decade prospective birth cohort  Psychological Medicine.  1–8. https://doi.org/10.1017/S003329171900271X

Rice, F., Riglin, L., Lomax, T., Souter, E., Potter, R., Smith, D.J., Thapar, A.K., Thapar, A. (2018). Adolescent and adult differences in symptom profiles for major depression. Journal of Affective Disorders, 243:175-181. doi: 10.1016/j.jad.2018.09.015.

Rice, F., Langley, K., Woodford, C., Davey-Smith, G., Thapar, A. (2018).  Identifying the contribution of prenatal risk factors to offspring development and psychopathology: what designs to use and a critique of literature on maternal smoking and stress in pregnancy.  Development and Psychopathology, 30(3):1107-1128. doi: 10.1017/S0954579418000421

Ng-Knight, T., Riglin, L., Shelton, K.H., Frederickson, N., Rice, F. (2018). "'Best friends forever'?  Friendship stability across school transition and associations with mental health and educational attainment. British Journal of Educational Psychology. doi: 10.1111/bjep.12246.

Rice, F., Rawal, A., Riglin, L., Lewis, G., Lewis, G., Dunsmuir, S (2015).  Examining reward-seeking, negative self-beliefs and over-general autobiographical memory as mechanisms of change in classroom prevention programs for adolescent depression.  Journal of Affective Disorders. doi: 10.1016/j.jad.2015.07.019.

Rawal, A., Collishaw, S., Thapar, A., Rice F (2013).  “The risks of playing it safe”: A prospective longitudinal study of response to reward in the adolescent offspring of depressed parents.  Psychological Medicine, 43(1), 27-38.

Rice, F., Harold, G.T., Boivin, J., Hay, D., van den Bree, M.M.B., Thapar, A. (2010). The effects of gestational stress on offspring birth weight and psychopathology: disentangling prenatal environmental and inherited influences.  Psychological Medicine 40(2):335-45.

Rice, F., Harold, G.T., Boivin, J., Hay, D., van den Bree, M.M.B., Thapar, A (2009).  Disentangling prenatal and inherited influences in humans with an experimental design. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences USA 106 (7), 2464-2467.

Selected previous projects:

2017 - 2020     Longitudinal study of inflammation and immunity in young people at high risk of developing mental health problems.  Hodge Foundation. £5,000. Principal Investigator.

2017 - 2020     The pubertal onset of mental and substance use disorders £636,183. National Health and Medical Research Australia.  Associate Co-Investigator. 

2011 - 2015     Nuffield Foundation - Examining pathways linking psychological adjustment and academic attainment across the transition to secondary school  £118, 115. Principal Investigator.

2012 - 2013     MRC Centenary Early Career Award £79, 422. Principal Investigator.

2009 - 2012     MRC NIRG - Neurocognitive predictors of adolescent depression: a high risk longitudinal study £392, 053.  Principal Investigator.

Supervision

I am interested in supervising PhD students in the areas of:

  • developmental psychopathology 
  • risk and resilience for depression and anxiety 

Past projects

Past PhD students who have studied with me as first supervisor include:

  • Lucy Riglin (UCL 2011-2015). 
  • Exploring the relationship between depressive symptoms and attainment at school

  • Terry Ng-Knight (UCL 2011-2015). 
  • A prospective longitudinal study of the transition to secondary school: exploring risk and protective factors

  • Shiri Davidovich (UCL 2013-2017). 
  • Examining cognitive risk and protective factors involved in liability to depression.

    • Naomi Warne (Cardiff 2015-2018). 
    • Autobigraphical memory and early onset depression: insights from the environment, genetics and brain structure. 

    • Victoria Powell (Cardiff 2018-2021).
    • Investigating the link between attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder and depression.   

    Research links