Washington University School of Medicine

Department of Psychiatry

Molecular Genetics of Schizophrenia Study


Contents


The Study

Schizophrenia is a chronic and disabling disease of the brain. It affects about 1 to 2 percent of the population or about 2 million Americans.

Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis has been awarded federal funds from the National Institute of Mental Health to study the genetics of Schizophrenia. This study is a collaborative effort with eight other sites in the United States and Australia. C. Robert Cloninger, M.D. is the Principal Investigator of the St. Louis site.

The study will focus on families in which two or more living sisters and/or brothers have a history of Schizophrenia.

Participants will be asked to complete a diagnostic interview and answer questions about their family history. Participants who live too far away from the medical school can be interviewed over the telephone. Each participant will also be asked to give a small blood sample for DNA research. Blood samples will be drawn by a trained phlebotomist or local physician and mailed directly to the laboratory if a visit is not possible.

All information obtained will be strictly confidential, even from family members. No family members will be contacted without prior permission of the relative who supplied the contact information.

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Study Criteria

The study is looking for families in which two or more living brothers and/or sisters have been diagnosed with Schizophrenia or have the symptoms of Schizophrenia.

Families comprised of half brothers and/or sisters will also be included.

Participants must be willing to participate in the study, which may include confidential interviews (lasting 2 to 4 hours) about the participant and his/her family, and the drawing of a small blood sample.

Participants will be monetarily compensated to cover their time and travel.

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Benefits of Participating

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Key Concepts

Schizophrenia: A disorder of the thinking process, characterized by delusions and hallucinations, and extensive withdrawal from people and the outside world.

Confidentiality: All information gathered from each participant is kept strictly confidential. Blood is sent to the laboratory with an identification number (instead of a name) attached.

Diagnostic Interview: An interview conducted by a trained individual.

DNA Linkage Study: To find the gene(s) responsible for Schizophrenia, blood is drawn from family members. The blood sample is then used to create a cell line, which is living tissue. This process will take place at a central laboratory. DNA then will be extracted from the cell and saved for scientific analyses that will be done now and in the future.

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Symptoms of Schizophrenia

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Contact Information

For more information, please call toll free at: (888) 925-7252 or contact us at the addresses below:

 

Principal Investigator

C. Robert Cloninger, M.D.

Washington University School of Medicine
Department of Psychiatry
660 South Euclid Ave.
St. Louis, MO 63110
(314) 362-7005

 

Project Coordinator                                                                                  

Art Schaffer                                                                                                

Washington University School of Medicine
Department of Psychiatry
4625 Lindell Blvd., Suite 200
St. Louis, MO 63108
(314) 286-1506
schaffer@tci.wustl.edu

 

Research Assistant

Andrea Miller

Washington University School of Medicine
Department of Psychiatry
4625 Lindell Blvd., Suite 200
St. Louis, MO 63108
(314) 286-1351
andrea@tci.wustl.edu

 

Research Assistant

Rebecca Henry

Washington University School of Medicine
Department of Psychiatry
4625 Lindell Blvd., Suite 200
St. Louis, MO 63108
(314) 286-1352
Henry_B@tci.wustl.edu

 

 

Fax: (314) 454-0432

 

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Links

Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis

 

Washington University School of Medicine Department of Psychiatry

 

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Last revised: July 28, 2000.

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