Inheritance of major psychiatric disorders

E. S. Gershon, John Nurnberger

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

In the numerous twin studies of affective illness and chronic schizophrenia that have been performed in the last half century, the concordance of monozygotic (identical) twins has consistently been much higher than for dizygotic (fraternal) twins16,21. Furthermore, it is quite unusual to find affective illness in one twin and schizophrenia in the other. For both types of disorder, the incidence of psychiatric illness amongst biological relatives of adopted patients is higher than for adoptive relatives. Furthermore, the diagnoses in the biological relatives are similar to those of the patient. These findings suggest that schizophrenia and affective illness represent distinct classes of disorders which are transmitted genetically, though the possibility remains that non-genetic influences such as infection with a slow virus, acting prior to the age of adoption (i.e. during infancy) could mimic genetic transmission.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)241-242
Number of pages2
JournalTrends in Neurosciences
Volume5
Issue numberC
DOIs
StatePublished - 1982
Externally publishedYes

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Psychiatry
Schizophrenia
Monozygotic Twins
Twin Studies
Chronic Disease
Viruses
Incidence
Infection

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)

Cite this

Inheritance of major psychiatric disorders. / Gershon, E. S.; Nurnberger, John.

In: Trends in Neurosciences, Vol. 5, No. C, 1982, p. 241-242.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Gershon, E. S. ; Nurnberger, John. / Inheritance of major psychiatric disorders. In: Trends in Neurosciences. 1982 ; Vol. 5, No. C. pp. 241-242.
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