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Science News About Bipolar Disorder

Coping With Familial Mental Illness in Stressful Times

Science Update

“An NIH/NIMH lifer” reveals how his Asian American family successfully coped with severe mental illness compounded by discrimination.

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Symptoms Outdo Diagnoses in Predicting Bipolar Disorder in At-Risk Youth

Science Update

Three types of symptoms emerged as powerful predictors of whether a youth with one parent with bipolar disorder will go on to develop the disorder, according to a new NIMH-funded study of 391 at-risk youth.

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Genome-Wide Study Yields Markers of Lithium Response

Science Update

Genome-Wide Study Yields Markers of Lithium Response

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Biomarkers Outperform Symptoms in Parsing Psychosis Subgroups

Press Release

Three biomarker-based categories, called “biotypes,” outperformed traditional diagnoses, such as schizophrenia and bipolar disorder with psychosis, in sorting psychosis cases into distinct subgroups on the basis of brain biology

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Disorders Share Risk Gene Pathways for Immune, Epigenetic Regulation

Science Update

Risk genes for different mental disorders work through same pathways

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Rapid Agent Restores Pleasure-seeking Ahead of Other Antidepressant Action

Press Release

A drug being studied as a fast-acting mood-lifter restored pleasure-seeking behavior independent of – and ahead of – its other antidepressant effects.

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Suspect Gene Corrupts Neural Connections

Press Release

Researchers have shown in patients’ cells how a rare mutation in a suspect gene disrupts the expression of dozens of other genes underlying neural connections.

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Brain Region Singled Out for Social Memory, Possible Therapeutic Target for Select Brain Disorders

Science Update

The hippocampus houses learning and memory—specifically the storage of knowledge of who, what, where, and when. Using a special transgenic mouse, researchers have now pinpointed a hippocampal region called CA2 that is important for social memory, the ability of animal to recognize another of the same species. Understanding this region could be useful in understanding and treating disorders characterized by altered social behaviors such as schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and autism.

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New Data Reveal Extent of Genetic Overlap Between Major Mental Disorders

Press Release

The largest genome-wide study of its kind has determined how much five major mental illnesses are traceable to the same common inherited genetic variations.

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Ketamine Cousin Rapidly Lifts Depression Without Side Effects

Science Update

NMDA or glutamate receptor modulators as antidepressants have come of age. Human clinical studies demonstrated that ketamine can ward off depressive symptoms within 2 hours of administration and last for several days. Yet serious side effects are attached to this drug, including excessive sleepiness, hallucinations, and substance abuse behavior.

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Flu in Pregnancy May Quadruple Child’s Risk for Bipolar Disorder

Press Release

Pregnant mothers’ exposure to the flu has been linked to a nearly 4-fold increased risk for bipolar disorder in their adult child.

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NIH Study Shows People with Serious Mental Illnesses Can Lose Weight

Press Release

Losing weight is challenging for everyone. It can be particularly difficult for someone with a serious mental illness. An NIMH-funded clinical study proves that a modified diet and exercise program can work for people with serious mental illnesses. Participants lost 7 pounds more than controls—and continued to lose weight.

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Five Major Mental Disorders Share Genetic Roots

Science Update

Five major mental disorders share some of the same genetic risk factors, the largest genome-wide study of its kind has found.

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