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Spiderbob aka Amy: 20, New Englander, bird-lover. Anything-goes blog, mostly fandom, cute animals, and pretty things. I love AU's.

Most of my comments (if any) are in my tags.

I reblog posts at an alarming rate the days before assignments are due. Be prepared.

Neither Rain Nor Snow Nor Glom of Nit
Schizophrenia not a single disease but multiple genetically distinct disorders

neurosciencestuff:

New research shows that schizophrenia isn’t a single disease but a group of eight genetically distinct disorders, each with its own set of symptoms. The finding could be a first step toward improved diagnosis and treatment for the debilitating psychiatric illness.

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The research at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis is reported online Sept. 15 in The American Journal of Psychiatry.

About 80 percent of the risk for schizophrenia is known to be inherited, but scientists have struggled to identify specific genes for the condition. Now, in a novel approach analyzing genetic influences on more than 4,000 people with schizophrenia, the research team has identified distinct gene clusters that contribute to eight different classes of schizophrenia.

“Genes don’t operate by themselves,” said C. Robert Cloninger, MD, PhD, one of the study’s senior investigators. “They function in concert much like an orchestra, and to understand how they’re working, you have to know not just who the members of the orchestra are but how they interact.”

Cloninger, the Wallace Renard Professor of Psychiatry and Genetics, and his colleagues matched precise DNA variations in people with and without schizophrenia to symptoms in individual patients. In all, the researchers analyzed nearly 700,000 sites within the genome where a single unit of DNA is changed, often referred to as a single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP). They looked at SNPs in 4,200 people with schizophrenia and 3,800 healthy controls, learning how individual genetic variations interacted with each other to produce the illness.

In some patients with hallucinations or delusions, for example, the researchers matched distinct genetic features to patients’ symptoms, demonstrating that specific genetic variations interacted to create a 95 percent certainty of schizophrenia. In another group, they found that disorganized speech and behavior were specifically associated with a set of DNA variations that carried a 100 percent risk of schizophrenia.

“What we’ve done here, after a decade of frustration in the field of psychiatric genetics, is identify the way genes interact with each other, how the ‘orchestra’ is either harmonious and leads to health, or disorganized in ways that lead to distinct classes of schizophrenia,” Cloninger said. 

Although individual genes have only weak and inconsistent associations with schizophrenia, groups of interacting gene clusters create an extremely high and consistent risk of illness, on the order of 70 to 100 percent. That makes it almost impossible for people with those genetic variations to avoid the condition. In all, the researchers identified 42 clusters of genetic variations that dramatically increased the risk of schizophrenia.

“In the past, scientists had been looking for associations between individual genes and schizophrenia,” explained Dragan Svrakic, PhD, MD, a co-investigator and a professor of psychiatry at Washington University. “When one study would identify an association, no one else could replicate it. What was missing was the idea that these genes don’t act independently. They work in concert to disrupt the brain’s structure and function, and that results in the illness.”

Svrakic said it was only when the research team was able to organize the genetic variations and the patients’ symptoms into groups that they could see that particular clusters of DNA variations acted together to cause specific types of symptoms.

Then they divided patients according to the type and severity of their symptoms, such as different types of hallucinations or delusions, and other symptoms, such as lack of initiative, problems organizing thoughts or a lack of connection between emotions and thoughts. The results indicated that those symptom profiles describe eight qualitatively distinct disorders based on underlying genetic conditions.

The investigators also replicated their findings in two additional DNA databases of people with schizophrenia, an indicator that identifying the gene variations that are working together is a valid avenue to explore for improving diagnosis and treatment.

By identifying groups of genetic variations and matching them to symptoms in individual patients, it soon may be possible to target treatments to specific pathways that cause problems, according to co-investigator Igor Zwir, PhD, research associate in psychiatry at Washington University and associate professor in the Department of Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence at the University of Granada, Spain.

And Cloninger added it may be possible to use the same approach to better understand how genes work together to cause other common but complex disorders.

“People have been looking at genes to get a better handle on heart disease, hypertension and diabetes, and it’s been a real disappointment,” he said. “Most of the variability in the severity of disease has not been explained, but we were able to find that different sets of genetic variations were leading to distinct clinical syndromes. So I think this really could change the way people approach understanding the causes of complex diseases.”

graceebooks:

inside jokes with yourself

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princekenkaneki:

lastoneout:

green-globbin:

thebest-memes:

"No matter how bad you fuck up at work, you didn’t fucked up this bad"

Oh my god. How do you even fix that

did he live?

free him

thegreynotes:

emt-monster:

nurse-on-duty:

Ectopia cordis

It’s a congenital malformation in which the heart is abnormally located either partially or totally outside of the thorax. The ectopic heart can be found along a spectrum of anatomical locations, including the neck, chest, or abdomen. In most cases, the heart protrudes outside the chest through a split sternum

holy shit that’s amazing

damn Nature, you cray

thelandofmaps:

Largest Participating Religious Group by County in 2010 [945x748]
CLICK HERE FOR MORE MAPS!
thelandofmaps.tumblr.com

not-enough-fandom:

godtierkankri:

proudlyinsane:

MAKING JOKES ABOUT HOW “ITS WEIRD TO SEE ME OUT OF MY ROOM FOR ONCE” DOES NOT MAKE ME WANT TO LEAVE MY ROOM MORE IT MAKES ME WANT TO LOCK MY DOOR AND NEVER LEAVE AGAIN I DON’T KNOW WHY THAT’S SUCH A HARD CONCEPT

This also applies to “WOW SHE’S CLEANING!” and anything else like that do not fucking do that.

CAN I JUST ADD “LOOK AT THAT SHES SMILING” OR “WoW SHEs TALKING”

thelandofmaps:

Popularity of Reddit in the world. [OC] [4500x2234]
CLICK HERE FOR MORE MAPS!
thelandofmaps.tumblr.com

catsbeaversandducks:

10 Bleps That Prove a Cat is Cutest When Its Tongue is Out

The Blep: An adorable phenomenon that involves the protrusion of a cat’s cute pink tongue, often due to forgetfulness. 
Here we observe the blep in its many beautiful manifestations. [distractify]