Director’s Blog It’s difficult to overstate the impact that genomic medicine is having on biomedical research and practice. For cancer diagnostics, rare disease therapeutics, and fields like microbiomics and infectious diseases, the advent of cheap, fast, precise genomic sequencing has been a game changer. What about mental disorders

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Director’s Blog Every cell in your body has the same DNA with about 23, 000 genes. Yet blood cells and brain cells look different, have different proteins, and serve very different functions.

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Abstract: Objective: Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is significantly and positively associated with several physical conditions. We aimed to examine whether the nature and number of trauma(s) experienced may be related to physical conditions using a population-based sample.Methods: Data came from Wave 2 of the National Epidemiologic Survey on Alcohol and Related Conditions (N=34, 653; age 20 years and older).

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Importance There has been recent interest in the findings that the offspring of older fathers have an increased risk of both de novo mutations and neuropsychiatric disorders. However, the offspring of younger parents are also at risk for some adverse mental health outcomes.

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Director’s Blog In a few weeks, the American Psychiatric Association will release its new edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5). This volume will tweak several current diagnostic categories, from autism spectrum disorders to mood disorders. While many of these changes have been contentious, the final product involves mostly modest alterations of the previous edition, based on new insights emerging from research since 1990 when DSM-IV was published.

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Director’s Blog Autism is always surprising. Earlier today, the CDC released new numbers from their ongoing surveillance of autism prevalence, the Autism and Developmental Disability Monitoring (ADDM) Network . What was once considered a rare disorder is now reported as affecting 1 in 88 children, 1 in 54 boys

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Director’s Blog Last week’s autism news was about prevalence. The CDC reported a 78 percent increase in autism prevalence since 2002. This week’s autism news is about genetics— three papers in Nature describe new genes associated with autism

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Director’s Blog There are so many reasons not to share scientific data – in industry, among academics, and even for some patients. For pharmaceutical companies, data are usually considered proprietary, with sharing limited by intellectual property rules.

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Director’s Blog Some moments in science are so transformative that they spill out of the usual academic circles to become headlines in the New York Times and, for a day or two, part of a public conversation. This summer we had two such stories from diverse areas of science: the Curiosity landing on Mars and the report of spontaneous mutations transmitted by older fathers. Earlier this month another report – actually 30 separate papers – marked a transformative moment in our discovery of the genome.

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Director’s Blog Julius Axelrod was one of NIMH’s greatest scientists and mentors for five decades until his death in 2004 at age 92. In addition to his many discoveries – which led to his 1970 Nobel Prize – Julie, as he was known, was famous for his aphorisms.

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