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Etats-Unis : The Search for Schizophrenia Genes

le 11 février 2016

[Slate] Larger and larger samples are showing smaller and smaller effect sizes. What does this mean for drug development, clinical practice, and our view of mental illness?

Last week, according to many media accounts, scientists from Harvard Medical School, Boston Children’s Hospital, and the Broad Institute discovered the genetic basis of schizophrenia. The researchers reported in Nature  that people with schizophrenia were more likely to have the overactive forms of a gene called complement component 4, or C4, which is involved in pruning synapses during adolescence. However, suggesting a biologic mechanism for a small subset of those diagnosed with schizophrenia is not the same as confirming the genetic theory of schizophrenia. Benedict Carey, science reporter for the New York Times , delved into the details and reported the all-important fact that having the C4 variant would increase a person’s risk by about 25 percent over the 1-percent base rate of schizophrenia—that is, to 1.25 percent.

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