Professor Douglas Blackwood
Division of Psychiatry, University of Edinburgh, Royal Edinburgh Hospital, Morningside Park, Edinburgh EH10 5HF
Professor of Psychiatric Genetics and Honorary Consultant Psychiatrist
With W.Muir, D Porteous, B Pickard and others in the Psychiatric Genetics group we study genetic risk factors contributing to schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and major depressive disorder. 1) Molecular cytogenetic analyses (MP Malloy) has led to the cloning of several candidate genes identified at chromosomal breakpoint regions, notably the genes DISC1, PDE4B, GRIK4 and NPAS3 (e.g. Millar, Pickard et al (2005) Science 310: 1187-1191). 2)Candidate gene and genome wide association analysis (GWAS) using large case-control cohorts of patients with schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and recurrent major depression in the Scottish population.3) Bipolar and schizophrenia linkage analysis in large families from Scotland and Pakistan 4) examining specific groups of patients with major psychiatric disorder and co-morbid conditions including learning disability and unexplained swelling 5)member of Scientific committee of Generation Scotland involved in psychiatric phenotypes and collection of a population based sample of families for genetic studies. Funding – Research grants from Wellcome Trust, London; The Chief Scientist Office of the Scottish Government; TMRCI Glasgow. Schering-Plough (Organon).
Clinical and molecular genetics of schizophrenia and affective disorders – i) clinical and molecular analyses of case-control cohorts and familial psychoses. External collaborations:1) Broad Institute (MIT/Harvard) and MDD2000 network (P Sullivan, N Carolina) to perform Genome Wide Association Studies in schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and major depression; 2) Cold Spring Harbor Laboratories to resequence candidate genes in schizophrenia. 3)The Wellcome Trust Sanger centre Cambridge (Prof Seth Grant) for Genes to Cognition project to identify schizophrenia candidate genes related to glutamate neurotransmission . 4) King Edward VII Medical College , Lahore for linkage studies with large families from Pakistan 5)collaboration with Prof E simpson, UBC, Vancouver in studies of the candidate gene NR2E1. Clinical and molecular genetics of learning disability (LD) and co-morbid learning disability/psychosis–clinical studies and positional identification of susceptibility genes by chromosome re-arrangment mapping. Cellular neurobiology of candidate genes for schizophrenia and bipolar disorder studied in transfected primary neuronal, neuro/glio-blastoma cultures and lymphoblastoid cell lines. Delineation of signalling and trafficking cascades by mRNA and antibody studies. Neuroanatomy from murine and human systems. (Dr B Pickard, PhD students – Ms H Knight, Ms S Li).