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:6/2/2016)... LONDON , June 2, 2016 ... has awarded the 44 million US Dollar project, ... Security Embossed Vehicle Plates including Personalization, Enrolment, and IT Infrastructure ... world leader in the production and implementation of Identity Management ... in January, however Decatur was selected ...
(Date:5/20/2016)... , May 20, 2016  VoiceIt is excited ... with VoicePass. By working together, VoiceIt ...  Because VoiceIt and VoicePass take slightly different approaches ... increases both security and usability. ... about this new partnership. "This marketing ...
(Date:4/28/2016)... BANGALORE, India , April 28, 2016 ... of Infosys (NYSE: INFY ), and Samsung SDS, ... partnership that will provide end customers with a more ... payment services.      (Logo: ) ... financial services, but it also plays a fundamental part in ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:6/23/2016)... 23, 2016 Houston Methodist Willowbrook Hospital ... Sports Association to serve as their official health ... Methodist Willowbrook will provide sponsorship support, athletic training ... association coaches, volunteers, athletes and families. ... Sports Association and to bring Houston Methodist quality ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... , ... June 23, 2016 , ... ... announced the launch of the Supplyframe Design Lab . Located in Pasadena, ... explore the future of how hardware projects are designed, built and brought to ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... 2016 Andrew D ... Published recently in ... from touchONCOLOGY, Andrew D Zelenetz , discusses ... care is placing an increasing burden on healthcare ... therapies. With the patents on many biologics expiring, ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... 22, 2016  Amgen (NASDAQ: AMGN ) ... QB3@953 life sciences incubator to accelerate the development ... laboratory space at QB3@953 was created to help high-potential ... for many early stage organizations - access to laboratory ... Amgen launched two "Amgen Golden Ticket" awards, providing each ...
Breaking Biology Technology: