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Revista Brasileira de Psiquiatria

Print version ISSN 1516-4446

Abstract

ALDA, Martin. Transtorno bipolar. Rev. Bras. Psiquiatr. [online]. 1999, vol.21, suppl.2, pp. 14-17. ISSN 1516-4446.  http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S1516-44461999000600005.

Family studies of bipolar disorder have suggested that the illness might have a genetic basis. This hypothesis has been also supported by twin and adoption studies. The inheritance of bipolar disorder follows a complex pattern likely including a contribution of several genes, heterogeneity, and interaction of genetic and non-genetic factors. The search for specific susceptibility genes has now generated replicated findings on chromosomes 4, 12, 18 and 21, and possibly several others. The most promising results have been obtained using the linkage strategy, while the association studies have generated perhaps stimulating, but less definitive findings. Further progress may benefit from studies of homogeneous patient populations and an improved phenotype definition. Identification of bipolar-disorder genes will contribute to better understanding and treatment of this illness.

Keywords : Bipolar disorder; genetics; linkage; association.

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