Scientists find genetic links to schizophrenia
A team of scientists has found 80 new genes that may raise a person's risk of developing schizophrenia, according to a new study published in Nature. It's the largest study to show that the illness can be caused by biological factors.
The research, led by Cardiff University in Wales, found more than 100 genes associated with schizophrenia, 83 of which were never known before. What kind of genes? Many play a role in communicating chemical messages throughout the brain while others are immune-related. The researchers examined the genertic make-up of more than 37,000 people with the condition, comparing them with about 110,000 people without the disease.
This discovery appears to open a new door to the understanding and treatment of schizophrenia. Previously, scientists struggled with creating treatments because so little was understood about the biology of the disease, which affects more than 24 million people worldwide.