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Australia, Mongolia Collaborate on Schizophrenia Genetics Research

By a GenomeWeb Staff Reporter

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – Researchers in Western Australia will partner with the government of Mongolia to study genes involved in schizophrenia in order to discover causes of the disease, Western Australia University said today.

The partnership will involve the efforts of the Western Australia Family Study of Schizophrenia (WAFSS), which maintains a genetic database of the disease, and the National Center of Mental Health, Mongolia, which will provide training in advanced diagnostic methods and help in developing genetic-based mental health studies in Mongolia.

The researchers will use DNA samples that will be collected from volunteers in Mongolia and analyzed in Australia to search for genes involved in schizophrenia. The scientists also will work in Mongolia conducting electrophysiological testing on research participants.

Assen Jablensky, a professor at Western Australia University and a director of the Centre for Clinical Research in Neuropsychiatry, said that the collaboration will expand schizophrenia research into the genetic origins of the disease.

"We have here an excellent opportunity to add to our genetic database and also to improve the delivery of mental health care in Mongolia through the Centre for Mental Health," Jablensky said in a statement.

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