Rutgers receives $22.6 million to investigate genetics of mental disorders

NEW BRUNSWICK/PISCATAWAY, N.J. -- Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey, has been awarded a $22.6 million, five-year grant by the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) to establish the Center for Collaborative Genetic Studies on Mental Disorders. The award is the result of a national competition lasting eight months and involving several levels of review by scientists throughout the United States

. The center will be engaged in efforts to discover the genetic bases of mental disorders, such as autism, schizophrenia, bipolar disease and depression. Its scientists also will investigate the genetics of responses to drug therapies for these disorders. The goals of the center are to identify inherited factors that determine individual likelihood for developing each disorder and to establish whether certain groups could be helped by medications tailored to their genetic makeup. This will involve university research and clinical studies in concert with the pharmaceutical industry.

"This award reflects the great strides already made by Rutgers scientists and their colleagues in this area of research," said Rutgers President Richard L. McCormick. "We applaud their accomplishments and share with them in the belief that much more can be done to understand and combat these disorders that affect so many individuals and their families."

Principal investigator for the center project is Jay Tischfield, Duncan and Nancy MacMillan Professor of Genetics and chair of the department of genetics at Rutgers, and professor of pediatrics and psychiatry, Robert Wood Johnson Medical School, University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey.

"A decisive factor in this award was the Rutgers University Cell and DNA Repository (RUCDR), a world-renowned facility that supports research on the genetics of complex human diseases," said Tischfield.

Established in 1998 on Rutgers' Busch campus, the RUCDR supports National Institutes of Health and

Contact: Joseph Blumberg
732-932-7084 x652
Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey

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