NARSAD Researcher Makes Progress Toward His Goal of Prevention of Schizophrenia and Other Mental Illnesses

Stephen Glatt, Ph.D.
Stephen Glatt, Ph.D.

Stephen Glatt, Ph.D., NARSAD 2009 Young Investigator and 2010 Baer Prize for Schizophrenia Researcher Winner

Dr. Stephen Glatt of SUNY Upstate Medical University seeks to find causes and biomarkers for mental illness that will lead to early identification, intervention and prevention of schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, autism, attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder and substance abuse.

In research centered on the genetic and environmental contributors to major mental illnesses, Dr. Glatt is examining candidate genes and conducting genome-wide studies. To date, he has evaluated brain and blood gene expression levels in individuals with schizophrenia in order to identify novel candidate genes and presumed biomarkers for the disorder. Dr. Glatt's most recent work in the pursuit of schizophrenia biomarkers has shed light on the importance of alternative spliced isoforms of genes expressed in both the brain and blood of individuals with schizophrenia.

In addition to his search for schizophrenia biomarkers, he has done much to revitalize the dopamine hypothesis of schizophrenia - that the unusual behavior and experiences associated with schizophrenia can be explained by changes in the dopamine function in the brain. He has considerably narrowed the search for the genetic variations in the DRD2 gene (Dopamine Receptor D2) that make people susceptible to schizophrenia.

Dr. Glatt's work has been recognized by awards from SUNY and elsewhere, and supported by two NARSAD Young Investigator Awards, in 2006 and 2009. He is currently the principal investigator on National Institute of Mental Health-funded studies of schizophrenia and autism.

Click here for more details and a complete program from the NARSAD Mental Health Research Symposium will Dr. Glatt will present his research.