May 19, 2006

Dr. James Watson discusses search for genes linked to mental illness

There is a new video of a genetics talk given by Dr. James Watson (co-discoverer of DNA, and a parent of a son who has schizophrenia). The talk covers his early involvement in the discovery of DNA, as well as more recent work into the genetics of Autism and other brain disoders that have traditionaly been called "mental illness".

The video is definitely quite scientific so may be best for people (probably college students) who have a strong interest in the genetics of brain disorders. His primary focus is on autism research they are engaged in. He touches upon other diseases like Asperger's syndrome, schizophrenia, etc. - but doesn't go into much depth.

DNA and the Brain, by Dr. James Watson - Click here to View (may take a few minutes to start)

Description of talk:

James D. Watson, Nobel Laureate and Chancellor of Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory describes the years leading up to his 1953 discovery of won the Nobel Prize with Drs. Francis Crick and Maurice Wilkins. Dr. Watson explains that the key to uncovering the causes of brain disorders such as schizophrenia, depression, Asperger's syndrome, fragile X syndrome, Alzheimers, etc. is in our genes.

He depicts the strides being made by scientists at Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, a research institution in the biological sciences, as they search to find the genetic basis of neurological disorders.

CSHL scientists search to root out disease genes related to mental illnesses, such as schizophrenia and autism, and devise strategies for treating a variety of neurological disorders is discussed.


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