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Psychiatric Disorder Overlap, Drug Candidates Found With Gene Expression Approach

A University of Colorado Boulder-led team reporting in JAMA Psychiatry presents findings from a transcriptome-wide structural equation modeling (T-SEM)-based analysis of 13 psychiatric conditions with childhood- or adult-onset patterns. The team used the T-SEM approach to track down 466 genes with expression patterns corresponding to psychiatric disorder-related genes or genetic variants. Along with genes showing similar activity across certain types of conditions, the research highlighted potential drug repurposing strategies targeting genes unearthed in the analyses. "Highlighting the promise of T-SEM-informed drug repurposing, our analyses identify 35 drugs that target genes associated with the shared risk pathways across [bipolar disorder] and schizophrenia, along with [five] drugs targeting transdiagnostic pathways," the authors write. "With recent advances in psychiatric genetics, the field is beginning to deliver on one of the initial promises to propel drug discovery."

The Scan

Positive Framing of Genetic Studies Can Spark Mistrust Among Underrepresented Groups

Researchers in Human Genetics and Genomics Advances report that how researchers describe genomic studies may alienate potential participants.

Small Study of Gene Editing to Treat Sickle Cell Disease

In a Novartis-sponsored study in the New England Journal of Medicine, researchers found that a CRISPR-Cas9-based treatment targeting promoters of genes encoding fetal hemoglobin could reduce disease symptoms.

Gut Microbiome Changes Appear in Infants Before They Develop Eczema, Study Finds

Researchers report in mSystems that infants experienced an enrichment in Clostridium sensu stricto 1 and Finegoldia and a depletion of Bacteroides before developing eczema.

Acute Myeloid Leukemia Treatment Specificity Enhanced With Stem Cell Editing

A study in Nature suggests epitope editing in donor stem cells prior to bone marrow transplants can stave off toxicity when targeting acute myeloid leukemia with immunotherapy.