Severe Mental Illness: From Polygenicity to Biology
September 16 - 17, 2019
This two-day symposium, chaired by Dr. Steve Hyman, director of the Stanley Center for Psychiatric Research at Broad Institute, Dr. Guoping Feng of McGovern Institute at MIT and director of the Neurobiology and Model Systems group of the Stanley Center, and Dr. Benjamin Neale of Massachusetts General Hospital and director of Genetics at the Stanley Center, will bring together leading scientists working on the genetics, neurobiology, and treatment of schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, autism spectrum disorder, and related neuropsychiatric disorders. The central theme this year will address the challenges of turning genetic results that reveal extreme polygenicity into useful biological insights that can help patients. Our speakers will present progress in analytic approaches, technologies, and model systems that will help translate polygenic risk and other results from large-scale genetic studies into new understandings of pathophysiology, biomarker development, and much-needed new treatments.
The illnesses highlighted in this symposium cause lifelong disability to millions of persons — combined, more than 3 percent of the global population is affected by these severe disorders. Graduate students and postdoctoral associates are especially welcomed to this symposium in order to build this interdisciplinary field and address the unmet medical needs of patients and their families at a time of great opportunity and urgency.