Genetic causality in schizophrenia and bipolar disorder: out with the old and in with the new
Review articleOpen access

Schizophrenia (SZ) and bipolar disorder are highly heritable forms of major mental illness. Great hopes were held out for a major breakthrough with the advent of genome wide association studies, but to date there have been no obvious low hanging fruit. A richer harvest of strong candidates has however emerged from molecular cytogenetics and copy number variant mapping strategies promise to add more. Both strategies identify gene mutations, paving a direct path to biological studies and tests of causality. Risk genes and convergent biological pathways common to both disorders are being revealed, offering hope for a better understanding of aetiological factors and for the development of biomarkers to aid in diagnosis and prognosis.

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