UCL Global


Psychosis, a tale of two cities and one mind

Harmonizing data collection processes to better understand the link between genetic risk and psychosis. Part of the Cities partnership Programme.

15 September 2022

In recent years, we have made great progress in beginning to understand the genetic risk of developing psychosis (a key feature of both schizophrenia and bipolar disorder). This progress has largely been achieved through technological advancement and through global “team science”. The focus in schizophrenia research is increasingly turning to the question of whether the genetic variants that have been identified map onto specific symptoms or behavioural traits. In order to address this question it is important that research groups begin to standardize the methods employed to recruit and assess research volunteers. 

We hope to standardize and harmonize the data collection processes between our research group at UCL (>10,000 research subjects) and with the group led by Prof Krebs in Paris. This data harmonisation will allow us to perform combined analyses at a later stage. This is important because large datasets with comparable data are essential in order to have sufficient statistical power to make confident conclusions about the data obtained from the experiments performed. 

The focus of the groups in London and Paris are synergistic. The Paris group are more focused on prediction of the outcome in early phases of psychosis (genetics and epigenetics), whilst the London group are more focussed on the long-term outcomes in patients diagnosed with schizophrenia and bipolar disorder. For both of these foci it is important to have access to large primary datasets that can be used as training datasets in approaches such as machine learning.


Brain Sciences

UCL leads