Professor Faraone has been studying attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) for three decades. This topic has been of much interest to him because of the disorder’s high prevalence, its association with marked distress and disability in childhood and adulthood and its personal impact on my family. His research has several foci. One line of work seeks to discover new biological pathways that will, eventually, improve the diagnosis and treatment of the disorder. To achieve this goal, he has been coordinating an international network of researchers that has discovered several genes that cause the disorder. He his also conducting in depth studies of the SLC9A9 gene to better understand its functioning and how it’s disruption leads to neurodevelopmental disorders such as ADHD and autism. Because ADHD is also associated with aggressive behavior, substance use disorders and mood/anxiety disorders, Prof Faraone is studying the genetics of these comorbidities along with methods to predict which ADHD youth are at highest risk for these disorders. Results from these studies are disseminated via scientific publications, https://scholar.google.com/citations?user=PtJmhRwAAAAJ, and via www.ADHDinAdults.com, for which he is Program Director.
Dr. Glatt is Director of the Psychiatric Genetic Epidemiology & Neurobiology Laboratory (PsychGENe Lab). The mission of the PsychGENe Lab is to develop and apply methods for finding the causes of mental health and mental illness. The vision of the lab is that we will discover those causes and use that information to design interventions that treat or prevent these disorders, or foster resilience to them. We are running numerous research projects aimed at finding the genes and environmental risk factors for a wide variety of disorders, including schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder, autism spectrum disorder, and substance abuse disorders, among others. Our pipeline seeks to identify “risk genes” for these disorders by studying affected individuals and families and then to reveal how such genes alter brain biology leading to a vulnerability to mental illness.
My lab studies brain development and brain function in individuals with genetic disorders. The main focus of our work is on a genetic disorder called 22q11.2 Deletion Syndrome (22q11DS). Individuals with 22q11DS are at a 25-fold greater risk for developing schizophrenia than individuals in the general population. We examine the effects of genetic mutation, brain development, and neuropsychological function in youth with this disorder, in order to identify the factors that place youth at highest risk for developing schizophrenia. Eventually, our research may allow us to identify and provide early interventions to youth at high risk for schizophrenia, potentially easing the huge toll that schizophrenia takes on families. Another focus of our work is to determine the effectiveness of computer-based, on-line, cognitive interventions in youth with genetically based intellectual disorders. Our hope is that by demonstrating the effectiveness of on-line, cognitive interventions, we can reach and benefit many youth who may not have access to centers that are providing such interventions in person.
Molecular basis of cortical-basal ganglia and cortical-cerebellar circuit formation and dysfunction in neurological and psychiatric disease.
Mapping human genetic disease mutations