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Bridging the Gaps Between Basic Science and Cognitive-Behavioral Treatments for Anxiety Disorders in Routine Care

Current Status and Future Demands

Published Online:https://doi.org/10.1027/2151-2604/a000309

Abstract. As a core component of cognitive-behavioral therapies (CBT), behavioral exposure is an effective treatment for anxiety disorders. Still, recent treatment studies demonstrate relatively high rates of treatment dropout, nonresponse, and relapse, indicating a substantial need for optimizing and personalizing existing treatment procedures. In the present article, we aim to address current challenges and future demands for translational research in CBT for the anxiety disorders, including (a) a better understanding of those mechanisms conferring behavioral change, (b) identifying important sources of individual variation that may act as moderators of treatment response, and (c) targeting practical barriers for dissemination of exposure therapy to routine care. Based on a recursive process model of psychotherapy research we will describe distinct steps to systematically translate basic and clinical research “from bench to bedside” to routine care, but also vice versa. Some of these aspects may stimulate the future roadmap for evidence-based psychotherapy research in order to better target the treatment of anxiety disorders as one core health challenge of our time.

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