The causes for bipolar disorders in the genes?
People suffering from bipolar disorder, experience the day-to-day a roller coaster ride of emotions. The feeling of the sky can change in a highly scattering up to very sad within the shortest period of time. In bipolar disorder, manic phases with delusions of grandeur and severely depressed mood to thoughts of suicide, the Jack in the Hand. The causes of this dangerous disease are not understood until today. An international research team recently discovered 20 new genes that are associated with bipolar disorders.
Around 280 international researchers have discovered the end, under the leading participation of the University hospital of Bonn, and the universities of Marburg and Basel in a large-scale study, 20 new genes that are associated with bipolar disorders. The study is the largest of its kind. The results were recently published in the renowned journal “Nature Genetics”.
Largest genetics analysis to bipolar disorder
In two steps, the genome of nearly 30,000 people with bipolar disorder was investigated, and then, with around 170,000 control subjects were compared. “It is the largest genome-wide Association study in patients with bipolar disorder,” says Professor Dr. Markus Nöthen, Director of the Institute for human genetics of the Bonn University hospital.
20 new genes discovered associated with bipolar disorder
In the genome of the patients, the international research team discovered a total of 30 regions, which are associated with the disorders. 20 of them were identified in this study for the first time. According to the researchers, these genes lie in regions that can, for example, affect the action potential of neurons. Furthermore, the study team found the first evidence that the insulin regulation of the endocannabinoid system could be involved in the pathogenesis of the disease.
Two new sub-types of bipolar disorder classified
In addition, the scientists were able to distinguish scientists, two new sub-species of bipolar disorder. According to the study, the stronger the course of “type I” with a more pronounced manic and depressive phases, and an increased risk for schizophrenia. Bipolar disorders from the “type II”, by contrast, is milder and can be compared with the symptoms of Depression.
Genetic factors play an important role
Even if the exact causes are not yet fully known, it is clear to the study team that genetic factors play an important role in bipolar disorder. “There are many different genes are involved in the pathogenesis of the disease,” reports Dr. Andreas Forstner, one of the first authors, in a press release of the study results.
New therapy approaches in bipolar disorders
The results of the study provide promising approaches for new therapies. “The more we understand the biological basis of the disease, the better the new drugs can be developed,” says Professor Forstner. Until then, however, it is still a long way off. For more information, read the article: Bipolar disorder – causes, signs and therapy. (vb)