Do you inherit your parent's mental illness? NIHR Maudsley BRC research features in BBC film

Research from the NIHR Maudsley BRC appears on a BBC news feature broadcast this week, which asks: “Do you inherit your parent's mental illness?” 

Presented by BBC journalist James Longman, the film provides a moving personal view of how mental illness affects families through different generations, and was broadcast on BBC2’s Victoria Derbyshire show and other BBC channels.

It features interviews with Professor Cathryn Lewis and Dr Roland Zahn from the Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology & Neuroscience at King’s College London.

Professor Lewis, who is supported by the NIHR Maudsley Biomedical Research Centre, explains in the film how genetic determination of mental illness works, pointing out that "mental health disorders are not about a single gene but about a collection of genes. We need to start thinking about this as a cumulative loading of genetics."

Later in the film, James takes part in the NeuroMooD study, led by Dr Zahn.  The NeuroMooD study is using cutting-edge brain imaging technology at King’s Centre for Neuroimaging Sciences to test an innovative imaging-based “brain training” technique, centred on the idea that self-blaming emotions may be involved in depression. 

If successful, the technique could potentially provide an alternative treatment option for people with depression who haven’t responded to talking therapies or drug treatments.

Watch the film on the BBC website.  An accompanying online piece explores in more depth some of the issues around the genetics of mental illness.

The NeuroMooD study is being conducted by researchers at the Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology & Neuroscience at King’s College London and the University of Manchester.  The neurofeedback software used in the study was developed by Dr Jorge Moll’s team at the D’Or Institute for Research and Education, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.  The study has been awarded funding from the Brain & Behavior Research Foundation, USA, and part of the underpinning science was funded by the UK Medical Research Council.

Tags: Precision psychiatry - Biomarkers & genomics -

By NIHR Maudsley BRC at 13 May 2016, 11:46 AM

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