Prediction of neuroleptic response: genetic strategies

  • J. L. Kennedy


There is a revolution occurring in medicine. This revolution is the application of the information available from the mapping and sequencing of the human genome. This information provides the blueprint for the structure of the brain and other organs in any given individual. Genes code for proteins and other information molecules that create the hardware of the organism. For the brain there has been a massive increase in the information available regarding the genetic determinants of brain structure. A recent rapid increase in the detection of genes expressed in the brain has been described by Daly et al. (1991) such that more than 3,500 genes expressed in the brain have been tagged (Adams et al. 1993). This marking process of the brain genes does not define their function, however, it does create a “library” of molecular tools to choose from when dissecting any given brain mechanism. Unfortunately, the function of most of these genes is not yet understood. This library of brain genes will be much more useful when they have been sequenced and more fully characterized. Such a task is large, but not overwhelming, and will be accomplished in the next few years. These 3,500 genes represent approximately 10 % of the number expressed in the brain. Advancing technologies can be used to identify most of the remaining 90 %. In parallel with this molecular neuroscience effort, similar “gene accounting” projects are ongoing for other organs. Thus the stage is being set for a new wave of information that can be utilized in the understanding of the structures of the brain, and the inter-individual variability of those structures. Of course, genes regulate function as well, by coding for enzymes and regulatory molecules.


Brief Psychiatric Rate Scale Discriminant Function Analysis DRD4 Gene Clozapine Response Blood Brain Barrier Cell 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Wien 1994

Authors and Affiliations

  • J. L. Kennedy
    • 1
  1. 1.Section of Neurogenetics, Clarke Institute of PsychiatryUniversity of TorontoTorontoCanada

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