Research provides direction in ongoing search for genetic links to bipolar disorder

John I. Nurnberger, Tatiana Foround

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article


Results from recent genetic studies of bipolar disorder have identified several chromosomal regions with promising results (Table 1, see page 22). While few, if any, genes or regions have replicated in all genetic studies, this is to expected, because there are likely numerous susceptibility genes influencing the risk of bipolar disorder. For a candidate gene to be convincingly shown to be a susceptibility gene, the following elements should probably be present: some evidence of linkage in the location of the candidate; association in case-control series of more than 200 subjects; association in family-based triad series; evidence of a potential pathophysiologic role for the candidate; and independent replication of results. Importantly, it may be necessary to consider other factors, such as gene-environment and gene-gene interactions, to demonstrate definitely the role of a candidate gene in disease susceptibility. While no genes have been shown to play a definite role in the risk for bipolar disorder, recent progress suggests that the identification of some of these genes is possible within the next few years.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)21-28
Number of pages8
JournalPsychiatric Annals
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2004

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health

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