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Bio 340 Genetic Disorders

In: Science

Submitted By shae0326
Words 1168
Pages 5
BIO340 Recitation
9/5/14

Dr. Steele
In the article, “5 Disorders Share Genetic Risk Factors, Study
Finds”, Dr. Jordan Smollar, a professor of psychiatry at Harvard
Medical School, discovered two abnormalities in one of his recent studies concerning mental illness and their genetic connections within the human brain. This study consisted of over 60,000 people worldwide to further strengthen his research quantitatively. Through the massive testing, Dr. Smollar believes he had found a connection between 5 mental disorders (schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, autism, major depression, and attention deficit disorder) all with some sort of underlying relation with one another in the genetic “glitches” they share, 2 of which concerning a major signaling system in the brain.
Efforts began in 2007 and so investigative data from 19 countries of people’s DNA, with 33,332 people with psychiatric illness while studying 27,888 people who were free of the illness was collected. Researchers came to find overlapping genetic effects in identical twins, which further solidified the possible connections previously discussed. They had found 4 DNA regions that conferred a risk of psychiatric disorders. However, in 2 of the 4 regions, it was not clear what the genes were involved in doing. The other 2 genes were calcium channels. Calcium channels are used when neurons send signals to function our brains. Certain drugs prescribed by medical professionals are used to block calcium channels and therefore are used to treat high blood pressure. Furthermore, some researchers have even come to the conclusion that they may be

useful to treat bipolar disorder.
In studies including identical twins, researchers have previously found that while one child has been diagnosed with schizophrenia and the other had bipolar disorder, which arose some confusion and the need...

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