Depression, schizophrenia and bipolar disorder linked with ancient viral DNA in our genome – new research

Around 8% of human DNA is made up of genetic sequences acquired from ancient viruses. These sequences, known as human endogenous retroviruses (or Hervs), date back hundreds of thousands to millions of years – with some even predating the emergence of Homo sapiens.

This article is written by Rodrigo Duarte, Research Fellow, King's College LondonDouglas Nixon, Professor of Immunology in Medicine, Cornell University, and Timothy Powell, Senior lecturer, King's College London. It is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license.

By NIHR Maudsley BRC at 28 May 2024

New Doctoral Training Centre to investigate Multiple Sclerosis (MS) symptom management

The King's Doctoral Training Centre has recruited three PhD students to investigate how to best manage Multiple Sclerosis (MS) symptoms without using drugs.


By NIHR Maudsley BRC at 23 May 2024

Self-harm and digital technology overuse in young people with lived mental health experience

New research from the Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology & Neuroscience (IoPPN) at King’s College London, in partnership with YoungMinds – the UK’s leading children’s mental health charity - has found high levels of problematic mobile phone use, disturbed sleep, and self-harm among young people with mental health conditions. 

By NIHR Maudsley BRC at 22 May 2024

Ancient viral DNA in the human genome linked to major psychiatric disorders

New research led by King’s College London has found that thousands of DNA sequences originating from ancient viral infections are expressed in the brain, with some contributing to susceptibility for psychiatric disorders such as schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and depression.

By NIHR Maudsley BRC at 22 May 2024

Professor Ammar Al-Chalabi elected as Fellow of the Academy of Medical Sciences

Professor Ammar Al-Chalabi has been elected as a Fellow of the prestigious Academy for his remarkable contributions to advancing biomedical and health sciences, ground-breaking research discoveries and translating developments into benefits for patients and wider society.

By NIHR Maudsley BRC at 21 May 2024