Schizophrenia: Genetic Clues and Caveats

By Bower, Bruce | Science News, November 12, 1988 | Go to article overview

Schizophrenia: Genetic Clues and Caveats


Bower, Bruce, Science News


Schizophrenia: Genetic Clues and Caveats

For the first time, scientists have obtained evidence that a specific chromosome mutation contains a gene predisposing its bearers to schizophrenia and closely related mental disorders. In the Nov. 10 NATURE, psychiatrist Robin Sherrington of the University of London, England, and his colleagues say schizophrenia in seven Icelandic and English families is associated with inheriting a specific region of chromosome 5, indicating the presence of a gene influencing the occurrence of the disorder.

Another study in the same NATURE indicates, however, that schizophrenia is too complex to result from a single gene. Psychiatrist James L. Kennedy of Yale University and his co-workers report that the same region of chromosome 5 is unrelated to schizophrenia in several generations of a large Swedish family. The researchers suggest there may be several genes, each causing a different biochemical abnormality, that together result in a "final common pathway" to schizophrenia.

Although researchers cannot yet apply the findings to schizophrenics in general, who represent about 1 percent of the world's population, the new data "have broken the ice concerning the genetic mapping of schizophrenia," writes Eric S. Lander of Harvard University in a comment accompanying the reports.

Further information on how the specific chromosome 5 region relates to the inheritance of schizophrenia will come from studies underway at the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) in Bethesda, Md., and the University of Utah in Salt Lake City. Tentative results from four families with a large number of schizophrenic members do not suggest a "predisposition" gene lies in the identified chromosome 5 area, says psychiatrist Elliot S. Gershon, director of the NIMH project. Conclusive genetic data on several similar families in Utah will be available in a month or two, adds study director William Byerley.

In general, schizophrenia refers to a severe fragmentation of thought, emotion and behavior, often accompanied by delusions, hallucinations, apathy and an inability to take care of one's basic needs. Sherrington and his colleagues studied five Icelandic and two English families. Among a total of 104 individuals, 39 suffered from some form of schizophrenia, such as paranoid schizophrenia. Another five persons had a related disorder, called schizoid personality disorder, in which social relationships are shunned and strong emotions are rarely experienced. An additional 10 subjects had mental disorders unrelated to schizophrenia, such as severe depression.

The researchers took blood samples from each family member and isolated the DNA, which carries the entire human genetic code. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Schizophrenia: Genetic Clues and Caveats
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.