Genetics news & views from students enrolled in BIOL 2110 at Stockton University.
Friday, April 12, 2019
Can genetic variants predict depression risk in young people?
In a recent article on MedicalNewsToday, the idea of analyzing the genetic makeup of adults with depression is being used to predict which children are at risk for developing the illness. Several researchers have come together to work on creating a gene map of children who they believe are likely to develop depression. Data was analyzed from over 460,000 adults and they were able to calculate risk scores for children. In the group of children participants of ages seven to eighteen, 279 had symptoms of depression and 187 were healthy. The researchers also looked at the effect of early experiences of abuse on the young participants' mental health. Using the polygenic risk score calculations and exposure to childhood abuse helped the researchers to predict children at risk for depression.
After reading this article, I truly find the research to be very interesting and important. If researchers can accurately predict which children are going to develop depression, it can help reduce the amount of people that suffer from the illness. Depression can take over a person's life and knowing ahead of time who might develop the illness may help to prevent it.