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Creating an effective treatment for schizophrenia requires a better understanding of its biology, of the genes that cause it. Using technology to illuminate chromosomes, scientists confirmed the underlying genetics of this mental disorder. The identified genetic disruptions occur at a crucial time in brain development.

The science team hopes its research, published Wednesday in the journal Nature, leads to new medications to treat the disorder.

More important, using a similar strategy could help researchers identify genes that lead to autism and other brain disorders, said Dr. Daniel Geschwind, principal investigator and a professor of neurology and psychiatry at the University of California, Los Angeles School of Medicine.

– Susan Scutti

Read more: Scientists confirm genetics of schizophrenia