Novel susceptibility pathways and drug targets for psychosis

Oksana Korobko

Stress and elevated glucocorticoid hormones are known to trigger psychotic events in persons with susceptible genetic make up. Differences in glucocorticoid and mineralocorticoid receptor expression have been observed in several brain regions including amygdale, prefrontal cortex and hippocampus in patient with schizophrenia. Changes in gene expression are required for long-term neuroplasticity and common molecular and cellular mechanisms appear to be implicated in long-term plasticity induced by learning and memory, exposure to chronic stress or drugs of abuse.
Using different large scale gene expression profiling technologies glucocorticoid- and stress-responsive gene expression patterns from specific brain subregions of rodent brain were characterized in a variety of different animal models.
My task as a statistician is improvement of analysis tools for complex data and applies special algorithms for low-level detection of changes in gene-expression.