Researchers from the University of Toronto used a family-based study to associate a gene with bipolar disorder (BP). BP is a psychiatric disease characterized by reoccurring periods of mania and depression. It is estimated to affect approximately 1 percent of the world's population. The researchers analyzed blood samples from 283 nuclear families with a history of BP and performed genotype analyses of a gene suspected of being involved with the disease. They found two different single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) that were statistically linked to BP. This discovery marks an important step in finding the genetic contribution to bipolar disorder.
Neves-Pereira, M., Mundo, E., Muglia, P., King, N., et al. The Brain-derived neurotrophic factor gene confers susceptibility to bipolar disorder: evidence from a family-based association study. Am. J. Hum. Genet, 71: 651-655. 2002. [PubMed]
Last Reviewed: August 15, 2013