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Copy number variant syndromes are frequent in schizophrenia: progressing towards a CNV-schizophrenia model

By Venuja Sriretnakumar, Clement C. Zai, Syed Wasim, Brianna Barsanti-Innes, James L Kennedy, Joyce So

Posted 02 Apr 2019
bioRxiv DOI: 10.1101/596213 (published DOI: 10.1016/j.schres.2019.04.026)

The genetic underpinnings of schizophrenia (SCZ) remain unclear. SCZ genetic studies thus far have only identified numerous single nucleotide polymorphisms with small effect sizes and a handful of copy number variants (CNVs). This study investigates the prevalence of well-characterized CNV syndromes and candidate CNVs within a cohort of 348 SCZ patients, and explores correlations to their phenotypic findings. There was an enrichment of syndromic CNVs in the cohort, as well as brain-related and immune pathway genes within the detected CNVs. SCZ patients with brain-related CNVs had increased CNV burden, neurodevelopmental features, and types of hallucinations. Based on these results, we propose a CNV-SCZ model wherein specific phenotypic profiles should be prioritized for CNV screening within the SCZ patient population.

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