26 October 2009

Important Lecture on Thursday (29th) at IoP KCL On the Genetics of Neuropsychiatric Disorders (and Cognition)
Important Lecture on Thursday (29th) at IoP KCL On the Genetics of Neuropsychiatric Disorders (and Cognition)

Geneticists are beginning to close in on genetic risk variants for schizophrenia and other neuropsychiatric conditions with genetic predisposition. This broad category includes various forms of low intelligence with largely genetic causation.

Professor Michael Gill of Trinity College Dublin, will be presenting the guest lecture at Kings College London from 11:00 to 12:00 at the Institute of Psychiatry. Description:
Recent candidate gene and genome wide association studies have led to the identification of several new risk loci for the major psychoses. The biological role of these variants is largely unknown, making an understanding of the neural mechanisms they control a priority. Genetic variation may operate through intermediate traits or endophenotypes because of their role in underlying brain systems. To develop an understanding of the function effects of genetic variation contributing to risk for the major psychoses, we have assessed cognitive and neuropsychological, neurophysiological and neuroimaging measures in a large sample of patients with schizophrenia and related disorders. We have used this approach to interrogate risk variants at candidate gene risk variants and variants now emerging from Genome-wide Association Studies (GWAS).

We have shown that Dysbindin risk variants affect clinical symptom measures, spatial working memory, early processing of visual information, and brain structure. We have shown that lowered cognitive ability is likely to be at least part of the mechanism by which NOS1 associated alleles confer increased risk, consistent with the idea of ‘cognitive reserve’ as a risk factor for psychiatric disorders.

Furthermore, in a disorder characterized by heterogeneity, a genome-wide significant risk variant at ZNF804A appears to delineate a patient subgroup characterized by relatively spared cognitive ability. _IoP
The IoP at KCL is the home of Professor Robert Plomin, one of the world's leading researchers into the relationship between genes and IQ.

The pieces of the brain development puzzle are beginning to fall into place, as research tools improve. This type of research will be vitally important, if humans ever expect to find a higher destiny than was portrayed in the motion picture "Idiocracy."

Labels: ,

Bookmark and Share


Blogger SwampWoman said...

Not a huge surprise to me that there is a genetic link to mental illness and/or low IQ. Special education teachers only have to meet the parents to find where the children's problems come from.

Tuesday, 27 October, 2009  
Blogger al fin said...

Good observation, SW.

Humans have known this for a very long time. It required the brilliance of leftist political correctness to throw a dark shroud over the obvious, and prevent the type of research that was needed in order to help mitigate some of the inequity.

Wednesday, 28 October, 2009  

Post a Comment

“During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act” _George Orwell

<< Home

Newer Posts Older Posts