Stress-related psychopathology

HEALTH INFORMATION

Stress and common biological mechanisms of psychotic and mood disorders

WHAT WE KNOW

Psychotic disorders (e.g., schizophrenia, schizoaffective disorder) and mood disorders (e.g., bipolar disorder, major depression) are known to share genetic vulnerabilities and environmental risk factors that affect brain function and cognition. Our multidisciplinary approach to understanding the stress-related neurobiology of these severe and disabling psychiatric conditions sees collaboration among experts in cognition, neuroimaging, genetics, and bioinformatics working together on a number of specific projects which are listed below according to funding received.

OUR LATEST RESEARCH

Imaging Genetics in Psychosis Study

The Imaging-Genetics in Psychosis study aims to determine common stress-related pathology among schizophrenia and bipolar disorder patients, in association with shared genetic vulnerabilities, cognitive deficits, and brain phenotypes.

Epistatic genetic effects on brain structure in schizophrenia

This project uses data from the Australian Schizophrenia Research Bank to determine interactive genetic effects on brain structure and cognition in schizophrenia.

Epigenetic and childhood trauma in psychotic and mood disorder

This project examines epigenetic (methylation) markers of childhood trauma in schizophrenia and bipolar disorder patients.

Childhood trauma and inflammatory markers

This project examines immune and stress response markers in association with epigenetic markers and brain structure/function in psychotic disorders.

What else is happening in Stress-related psychopathology research at NeuRA?

FEEL THE BUZZ IN THE AIR? US TOO.

The cold case of schizophrenia - broken wide open!

‘It is like they were miraculously healed!’’ Schizophrenia is diagnosed by clinical observation of behaviour and speech. This is why NeuRA researchers are working hard to understand the biological basis of the illness. Through hours of work and in collaboration with doctors and scientists here and around the world, NeuRA has made an amazing breakthrough. For the first time, researchers have discovered the presence of antibodies in the brains of people who lived with schizophrenia. Having found these antibodies, it has led NeuRA researchers to ask two questions. What are they doing there? What should we do about the antibodies– help or remove them? This is a key breakthrough. Imagine if we are treating schizophrenia all wrong! It is early days, but can you imagine the treatment implications if we’ve identified a new biological basis for the disease? It could completely change the way schizophrenia is managed, creating new treatments that will protect the brain. More than this, could we be on the verge of discovering a ‘curable’ form of schizophrenia? How you can help We are so grateful for your loyal support of schizophrenia research in Australia, and today I ask if you will consider a gift today. Or, to provide greater confidence, consider becoming a Discovery Partner by making a monthly commitment. We believe there is great potential to explore these findings. Will you help move today’s breakthrough into tomorrow’s cure? To read more about this breakthrough, click ‘read the full story’ below. You are also invited to read ‘Beth’s story’, whose sweet son Marcus lived with schizophrenia, by clicking here.
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