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Schizophrenia: Gathering clues to rare gene variants contributing to disease

Schizophrenia has long been known to be highly heritable and is present in approximately 1% of the population. Researchers have been following two paths in their pursuit of identifying schizophrenia risk genes. Initially, they studied common gene variants that, individually, only increase the risk for schizophrenia by a few percent, perhaps increasing the likelihood of developing schizophrenia from a 10 out of a 1000 chance to an 11 or 12 out of a 1000 chance. More recently, research has identified gene variants that are rare in the population but, when present, more substantially increase the risk for developing schizophrenia. Results have been recently published in two new articles.
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