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Genetic factors and mental disorders Genetic factors and mental disorders Photo by: Since the Human Genome Project began its mapping of the entire sequence of human DNA inthe implications of its findings for psychiatric diagnosis and treatment have accumulated rapidly.
A new subspecialty known as biological psychiatry also called physiological psychology or psychiatric genetics has emerged from the discoveries of the last two decades.
Biological psychiatry got its start in the late s, when several research groups identified genes associated with manic depression and schizophrenia respectively. These studies ran into difficulties fairly quickly, however, because of the complexity of the relationship between genetic factors and mental illness.
The ongoing search for genes related to psychiatric symptoms and disorders is complicated by several factors: Psychiatric diagnosis relies on a doctor's human judgment and evaluation of a patient's behavior or appearance to a greater degree than diagnosis in other fields of medicine.
For example, there is no blood or urine test for schizophrenia or a personality disorder. Diagnostic questionnaires for mental disorders are helpful in trimming the list of possible diagnoses but do not have the same degree of precision or objectivity as laboratory findings.
Mental disorders almost always involve more than one gene. Studies have shown that one mental disorder can be caused by different genes on different chromosomes in different populations.
For example, one study in the late s found two genes on two different chromosomes among two populations that caused manic depression. Studies of schizophrenia done in the late s and early s revealed the same finding— different genes on different chromosomes produced schizophrenia in different populations.
It now appears that specific mental disorders are related to different sets of genes that vary across family and ethnic groups. Genes associated with mental disorders do not always show the same degree of penetrancewhich is defined as the frequency with which a gene produces its effects in a specific group of people.
Penetrance is expressed as a percentage. Genetic factors in mental disorders interact with a person's family and cultural environment.
A person who has a gene associated with susceptibility to alcohol abuse, for example, may not develop the disorder if he or she grows up in a family that teaches effective ways to cope with stress and responsible attitudes toward drinking.
There are several terms in biological psychiatry that are important to understand: A person's genotype is the sum total of the genetic material transmitted from his or her parents.
A person's phenotype is the observable signs, symptoms, and other aspects of his or her appearance. The term is also used sometimes to refer to a person's outward appearance and behavior as these result from the interaction between the person's genotype and his or her environment.by Meredith Root-Bernstein, Robert Root-Bernstein, and Michele Root-Bernstein An effective educational framework is necessary to develop the engagement of children and adults with nature.
Here we show how the tools for thinking framework can be applied to this end. The notion of race as a social construct I am proposing is partially captured by various works. In Takaki’s work A Different Mirror: A history of Multicultural America, race is a social construct produced by the dominant group in society and their power to define.
Further support for this hypothesis was provided more recently by a study of honeybees, Apis mellifera, which were found to exhibit elevated levels of displacement activities (such as grooming and locomotion) during the behavioural transition from waggle dancing to leaving the hive (Root-Bernstein, ).
A. Psychosurgery is a biological therapy that involves the removal or destruction of brain tissue to improve the individual's adjustment. B. A prefrontal lobotomy is a type of psychosurgery that involves severing fibers that connect the frontal lobe and the thalamus.
Biro, Blalock, Root-Bernstein and Siemion investigated different aspects of peptide-peptide interaction based on the coding of antisense DNA and RNA sequences in 3 → 5 and 5 → 3 directions. A. Sexual dimorphism, or differences between males and females, may lead to them being classified as different species.
B. Ants and termites have many castes, from winged reproductives to smaller workers to large-jawed soldiers, all of which would appear as vastly different species.