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EUR: Gene clues point to inherited risk for schizophrenia

Thu Jul 2 03:57:57 EST 2009

Three teams of scientists say they've identified hundreds of tiny genetic variants that together account for more than a third of the inherited risk for schizophrenia.

The flaws have been netted in a trawl through the DNA of thousands of individuals .. in the biggest study yet into the genetic origins of this enigmatic but crippling disease.

Schizophrenia's characterised by hallucinations and delusions .. striking around one percent of the population .. and emerging in late adolescence or in early adulthood.

Heritability is known to be a big factor .. accounting for between 70 and 90 percent of cases according to past research.

Some of the work also suggests similar genetic machinery may be responsible for manic depression .. also called bipolar disorder.

The studies are published in the British journal Nature.