Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Scientists Localize Susceptibility Gene For Schizophrenia

Date:
April 28, 2000
Source:
University Of Toronto
Summary:
Researchers believe they have localized a major susceptibility gene for schizophrenia on chromosome 1, according to a study published in the April 28 edition of the journal Science.

Researchers believe they have localized a major susceptibility gene for schizophrenia on chromosome 1, according to a study published in the April 28 edition of the journal Science.

Led by Dr. Anne Bassett, the study's senior author, researchers collected DNA samples and over a 12-year period assessed 300 individuals from 22 Canadian families with a high incidence of schizophrenia, a serious psychiatric illness that affects one per cent of the general population.

Bassett and her colleagues believe there are several genes involved and there may be environmental factors that interact to ultimately cause the illness. "Even though schizophrenia is complex, we decided to look for rare families where the illness looked like it was being inherited. The families participating in the study are key - they are large and have two or more members with schizophrenia," says Bassett, an associate professor of psychiatry at the University of Toronto and head of the schizophrenia research program at the Queen Street site of the Centre for Addiction & Mental Health (CAMH).

"If we compare the human genome to a map of the world and gene localizing to finding the neighbourhood the gene lives in, previous studies have been able to say that there may be a gene in North America, maybe even in Canada," she says. "Our study tells us that there is a gene predisposing to schizophrenia in the neighbourhood of downtown Toronto and that we should be able to pinpoint the exact location in the next step of the research."

Using a lod score analysis - the same method used to locate genes for breast cancer - the study's lead author, Dr. Linda Brzustowicz of Rutgers University in New Jersey, localized a schizophrenia susceptibility gene to a small region of chromosome 1, likely the "address" of the susceptibility gene. "This finding is very strong," Brzustowicz says. "This is approximately 100 times stronger evidence for the existence of a schizophrenia gene than reported in previous studies." The magnitude of the chromosome 1 result gives scientists realistic hope that further research will lead them to the schizophrenia gene that is in this region of the human genome. "These results should pave the way for discovering the other genes which may play a role in schizophrenia," says Bassett, who initiated this study 12 years ago while on a research fellowship at the New York State Psychiatric Institute where Brzustowicz and another of the study's authors, Dr. William Honer, now at the University of British Columbia, also trained. The authors believe knowing about the nature and function of genes will provide insights into the underlying biological mechanisms of schizophrenia and should lead to improved treatments for the disease. Other researchers involved in this study are Dr. Eva Chow, assistant professor of psychiatry at U of T and a research psychiatrist at CAMH, and Kathleen Hodgkinson, a genetic counsellor and graduate student with Dr. Bassett. This research, which has involved longstanding multicentre and multidisciplinary teamwork, has received funding from Canadian and American sources over the past 12 years. These include: the Medical Research Council of Canada, Ontario Mental Health Foundation, Bill Jefferies Research Foundation, Ian Douglas Bebensee Foundation, EJLB Foundation, Scottish Rite Schizophrenia Research Program, National Institute of Mental Health, Center for Inherited Disease Research, National Alliance for Research on Schizophrenia and Depression, and individual donations. The Centre for Addiction and Mental Health, a World Health Organization Centre of Excellence and a teaching hospital fully affiliated with the University of Toronto, was established in 1998 through the merger of the Addiction Research Foundation, the Clarke Institute of Psychiatry, the Donwood Institute and the Queen Street Mental Health Centre.

CONTACT:

Steven de Sousa
U of T Public Affairs
(416) 978-5949
steven.desousa@utoronto.ca
http://www.newsandevents.utoronto.ca


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University Of Toronto. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

University Of Toronto. "Scientists Localize Susceptibility Gene For Schizophrenia." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 28 April 2000. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2000/04/000427093117.htm>.
University Of Toronto. (2000, April 28). Scientists Localize Susceptibility Gene For Schizophrenia. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 28, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2000/04/000427093117.htm
University Of Toronto. "Scientists Localize Susceptibility Gene For Schizophrenia." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2000/04/000427093117.htm (accessed July 28, 2014).

Share This




More Mind & Brain News

Monday, July 28, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Losing Sleep Leaves You Vulnerable To 'False Memories'

Losing Sleep Leaves You Vulnerable To 'False Memories'

Newsy (July 27, 2014) A new study shows sleep deprivation can make it harder for people to remember specific details of an event. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
University Quiz Implies Atheists Are Smarter Than Christians

University Quiz Implies Atheists Are Smarter Than Christians

Newsy (July 25, 2014) An online quiz from a required course at Ohio State is making waves for suggesting atheists are inherently smarter than Christians. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Beatings and Addiction: Pakistan Drug 'clinic' Tortures Patients

Beatings and Addiction: Pakistan Drug 'clinic' Tortures Patients

AFP (July 24, 2014) A so-called drugs rehab 'clinic' is closed down in Pakistan after police find scores of ‘patients’ chained up alleging serial abuse. Duration 03:05 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
New Painkiller Designed To Discourage Abuse: Will It Work?

New Painkiller Designed To Discourage Abuse: Will It Work?

Newsy (July 24, 2014) The FDA approved Targiniq ER on Wednesday, a painkiller designed to keep users from abusing it. Like any new medication, however, it has doubters. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins