Navigation Links
Bipolar disorder genes, pathways identified by Indiana University neuroscientists

INDIANAPOLIS Neuroscientists at the Indiana University School of Medicine have created the first comprehensive map of genes likely to be involved in bipolar disorder, according to research published online Nov. 21 in the American Journal of Medical Genetics.

The researchers combined data from the latest large-scale international gene hunting studies for bipolar disorder with information from their own studies and have identified the best candidate genes for the illness.

The methodology developed at the IU Institute of Psychiatric Research enabled Alexander B. Niculescu III, M.D., Ph.D., and his team to mine the data from the genome-wide association studies and other study results on the levels of gene activity in human blood samples and in animal models. Genes with the highest levels of prominence were determined to be the most active in contributing to the disorder.

The researchers also were able to analyze how these genes work together and created a comprehensive biological model of bipolar disorder.

"Based on our work, we now project that there will be hundreds of genes possibly as much as 10 percent of the human genome involved in this illness," said Dr. Niculescu, who is an assistant professor of psychiatry and director of the laboratory of neurophenomics ( at the IU School of Medicine. "Not all genetic mutations will occur in every individual with bipolar disorder. Different individuals will have different combinations of genetic mutations. This genetic complexity is most likely what made past attempts to identify genes for the disorder through genetic-only studies so difficult and inconsistent."

Dr. Niculescu compared the process to a Web search. "The process was similar to a Google approach, the more links there are to a page on the Internet, the more likely it is to come up at the top of your search list. The more experimental lines of evidence for a gene, the higher it comes up on your priority list of genes involved in the disorder."

Until now there have been few statistically significant findings in searches of the human genome as it applies to bipolar disorder, he said.

"By integrating the findings of multiple studies, we were able to sort through, identify genes that were most likely to be involved in bipolar disorder, and achieve this major breakthrough in our understanding of the illness," Dr. Niculescu said.

Bipolar disorder, sometimes called manic depression, affects nearly 2.3 million Americans. A serious illness, people who suffer from it can experience mild or dramatic mood swings, shifts in energy and a diminished capacity to function.

Dr. Niculescu, a practicing psychiatrist and a molecular geneticist, said this work opens exciting avenues for psychiatric researchers and clinicians, as well as for patients and their families.

"First and foremost, these studies will lead to a better understanding of bipolar and related disorders," he explained. "Second, the researchers now plan to study individuals to see which combination of genes is present in individuals to come up with a genetic risk score."

The goal, he said, is to be able to apply the risk score to test individuals even before the illness manifests itself for preventive measures lifestyle changes, counseling, low-dose medications or to delay or stop the illness from developing.

"Third, in individuals who already have the illness, genetic testing in combination with blood biomarkers for the disease, could help determine which treatments works best so personalized treatments could be developed," Dr. Niculescu said.


Contact: Mary Hardin
Indiana University

Related biology news :

1. Largest study of its kind implicates gene abnormalities in bipolar disorder
2. Drug commonly used to treat bipolar disorder dramatically increases lifespan in worms
3. Seasonal affective disorder may be linked to genetic mutation, study suggests
4. OSAs ISP launches with research on breathing disorders and congenital heart defects
5. NARSAD announces 2008 Prizes for Outstanding Achievement in Research on Mental Health Disorders
6. Study provides insight on a common heart rhythm disorder
7. Anti-cancer drug prevents, reverses cardiovascular damage in mouse model of premature aging disorder
8. Vitiligo skin disorder could yield clues in fight against melanoma
9. Rare genetic disorder gives clues to autism, epilepsy, mental retardation
10. Aberrations in region of chromosome 1q21.1 associated with broad range of disorders in children
11. Cortisol and fatty liver: Researchers find cause of severe metabolic disorders
Post Your Comments:
(Date:7/20/2017)... (NYSE: DAL ) customers now can use fingerprints instead of ... Airport (DCA). ... Delta launches biometrics to board aircraft at Reagan Washington National Airport ... Delta,s biometric boarding pass experience that launched in May ... boarding process to allow eligible Delta SkyMiles Members who are enrolled in ...
(Date:6/23/2017)... and ITHACA, N.Y. , June 23, ... University, a leader in dairy research, today announced a ... to help reduce the chances that the global milk ... of this dairy project, Cornell University has become the ... the Food Supply Chain, a food safety initiative that ...
(Date:5/23/2017)... , May 23, 2017  Hunova, the first robotic gym for the ... been officially launched in Genoa, Italy . The first ... and the USA . The technology was developed ... market by the IIT spin-off Movendo Technology thanks to a 10 million ... News Release, please click: ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:10/10/2017)... ... October 10, 2017 , ... ... FirstHand program has won a US2020 STEM Mentoring Award. Representatives of the FirstHand ... Excellence in Volunteer Experience from US2020. , US2020’s mission is to change the ...
(Date:10/10/2017)... PA (PRWEB) , ... October 10, 2017 , ... ... year’s recipients of 13 prestigious awards honoring scientists who have ... presented in a scheduled symposium during Pittcon 2018, the world’s leading conference and ...
(Date:10/9/2017)... ... October 09, 2017 , ... ... medical journal, Epilepsia, Brain Sentinel’s SPEAC® System which uses the surface electromyography ... generalized tonic-clonic seizures (GTCS) using surface electromyography (sEMG). The prospective multicenter phase ...
(Date:10/6/2017)... ... October 06, 2017 , ... ... discussion and webinar on INSIGhT, the first-ever adaptive clinical trial for glioblastoma (GBM). ... Institute. The event is free and open to the public, but registration is ...
Breaking Biology Technology: