A step closer to personalized medicine for intellectual disability: 26 novel genes identified

Monday, April 17, 2017

CMW News, Sean O'Malley

TORONTO, April 11, 2017 /CNW/ - Researchers at the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH) and Queen's University have identified 26 new genes linked to intellectual disability. Currently most patients with intellectual disability receive no molecular diagnosis, which significantly affects their health and shortens their lifespan.

The study, published online today in Molecular Psychiatry, has implications for the diagnosis and clinical care of those affected, and also adds to our growing knowledge of brain development and functioning. It may eventually lead to personalized treatments for affected individuals. Interestingly, some of the genes identified are thought to be connected with autism spectrum disorders.

"This is the largest study of its kind on intellectual disability to come out of North America," said Dr. John Vincent, team leader and Senior Scientist who heads the MiND (Molecular Neuropsychiatry and Development) Laboratory in the Campbell Family Mental Health Research Institute at CAMH. The study was jointly led with Prof. Muhammad Ayub of Queen's University.

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