Research in Genetics and Molecular Biology

Research in Genetics and Molecular Biology

Effort is made to understand the genetic and molecular basis of diseases of the mind and brain. The laboratory conducts research on the genetic correlates of psychiatric disorders (schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, dementia, alcoholism, obsessive-compulsive disorder) through collaboration with several faculty members at NIMHANS, and with other scientists and clinicians. It also provides support for genetic research in neurology and clinical psychology. It focuses on concerted and focused multidisciplinary approach to understand genetics of the diseases of the brain and mind.

Student Activities: 
MD/PhD in molecular genetics approaches in psychiatric disorders are being undertaken. Doctoral studies are also available. Students in biotechnology and other related disciplines are trained in molecular techniques.

Research Activities: 
Towards identification of disease susceptibility loci for psychiatric  disorders a concerted effort with clinicians of the department has been initiated wherein families with significant loading of mental illness are being recruited. It is hoped that a detailed clinical assessment coupled with genetic analysis and cell based assays will enable us to answer these complex questions. A biorepository of biological material including patient derived immortalised cell lines has been maintained for this. 

The laboratory is also the biorepository for the cVEDA study which is a multicentre study launched to understand the influence of stress during neurodevelopment.

Equipments/Existing Facilities/ Infrastructure: 
The Molecular Genetics Laboratory of the Department of Psychiatry, NIMHANS has the  facilities for molecular genetic studies including PCR machines, Real time PCR machines,  an ABI 3500XL genetic analyser, Pyromark24 for epigenetic studies, tissue culture facilities for line generation and storage, Fluorescent microscopes and a SpectraMax i3X Multi-Mode Microplate Reader to study cellular and biochemical parameters.

Dr Biju Viswanath, 
Additional Professor, DBT/Wellcome Trust India Alliance Intermediate Clinical Fellow, Department of Psychiatry
National Institute of Mental Health and Neurosciences
Hosur Road 
Bangalore 560029, INDIA 
Telephone: +91- 80 – 26995262/63 
Fax: +91 – 80 – 26562121e