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Approved research

Identification of subgroups in heterogeneous and multifactorial disorders

Principal Investigator: Dr Osamu Ichikawa
Approved Research ID: 45099
Approval date: April 18th 2019

Lay summary

Most of psychiatric and neurologic disorders are heterogeneous and show various risk profiles, findings, comorbidities and outcomes for individuals. Therefore, the standard of care for a disease, which is a one-size-fits-all approach towards treatment and managements, may not be the best option for some patients. Although currently available medications can improve some symptoms or delay progression for a limited time, some patients fail to respond to repeated trials of medications. Furthermore, no single factor can make the ineffectiveness clear. This study aims to (i) define patient groups based on disease-related phenotypes using the UK Biobank as one of the most phenotypically-rich population-based resource, (ii) identify genetic factors and understand the biological and pathological mechanism for the specific groups. Dividing patients with these heterogeneous disorders into less different groups is the first step to discover therapeutic targets for each group, because there will be less different causes for their specific phenotypes than the existing broad category. Analysis of the UK Biobank data over the three-year study period will contribute to our understanding of the biology of diseases and symptoms, and the results will be used to support the initiation of novel drug discovery programs with human genetic evidence at our company. Thus, our project is well aligned with the UK Biobank's aim of 'improving the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of a wide range of serious and life-threatening illnesses'.