Monday, January 19, 2009

New study: Bipolar disorder and schizophrenia are genetically linked

A new study suggests that if schizophrenia runs in a family, there's a good chance that bipolar disorder does as well (and vice versa). The findings, published today in the journal The Lancet, suggest that the two disorders are caused by some of the same genes.

"These findings say that [schizophrenia and bipolar disorder] are related, above all, for genetic reasons," says lead study author Paul Lichtenstein, a genetic epidemiologist at the Karolinska Institutet in Stockholm, Sweden. "[Therefore] it might not be a good idea to view these disorders as separate entities."

Lichtenstein and his colleagues (researchers from both the U.S. and Sweden) scoured the entire Swedish population for anyone with schizophrenia or bipolar disorder by reviewing psychiatric discharge data from all Swedish hospitals between 1973 and 2004.


No comments: