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Int Rev Psychiatry. 2004 Nov;16(4):260-83.

A review of the evidence from family, twin and adoption studies for a genetic contribution to adult psychiatric disorders.

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  • 1Department of Mental Health, Bloomberg School of Public Health, Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, MD 21205, USA.


Family, twin and adoption studies have provided major evidence for the role of genetics in numerous psychiatric disorders including obsessive-compulsive disorder, panic disorder, major depressive disorder, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia and Alzheimer's disease. As the search for patterns of inheritance and candidate genes of these complex disorders continues, we review relevant findings from quantitative genetic studies and outline the main challenges for the field of psychiatric genetics to focus on in order to more definitively establish the underpinnings of genetic and environmental influences of adult psychopathology.

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