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Genetic Factors in Psychopathology

Implications for Prevention
  • Susan E. Nicol
  • L. Erlenmeyer-Kimling

Abstract

Genetic factors have been implicated in the etiology of many forms of psychopathology, including schizophrenia and the affective disorders, alcoholism and antisocial disorders, anxiety disorders, attention deficit disorder and certain of the specific developmental disorders, and a number of neurological disorders that may have behavioral components. In this chapter, we will focus on schizophrenia and the affective disorders, the psychiatric illnesses that have attracted the largest effort in genetic research thus far, and will review briefly some of the evidence linking genes to these disorders. We will discuss some genetic concepts important to understanding how genes may affect behavior, explore what is known about biological/genetic markers for mental illness, and consider the implications of finding markers in relation to treatment and prevention. We will borrow examples from medical illnesses to illustrate how increasing knowledge of genetic mechanisms sharpens our ability to predict environmental influences on disease incidence and course.

Keywords

Affective Disorder Genetic Liability Computerize Tomography Enlarge Ventricle Schizophrenia Bulletin 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1986

Authors and Affiliations

  • Susan E. Nicol
    • 1
  • L. Erlenmeyer-Kimling
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of PsychiatryHennepin County Medical CenterMinneapolisUSA
  2. 2.Division of Developmental Behavioral Studies, Medical GeneticsNew York State Psychiatric InstituteNew YorkUSA

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