Neural Correlates of Gene Function
- +44 (0)1865 618328
Founded in 2009
Highly cited research (~80 citations per publication)
Multidisciplinary and collaborative approach to research
Our research aims to understand how individual genes contribute to the complex brain functions that are impaired in people with psychiatric disorders. By understanding these links we hope to improve treatments for these disorders.
Our research aims to understand how individual genes, in combination with other genetic and environmental factors, influence complex brain functions. We take information from clinical populations and use a multidisciplinary approach to try and understand the underlying biological mechanisms, with the aim of developing better treatments for psychiatric disorders as a result. We are dedicated to using the most appropriate technical approaches to test our hypotheses. Therefore, our research is highly collaborative.
Historically, we have studied the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene. We’ve shown that COMT is critical for regulating dopamine, which is a key neurotransmitter in several psychiatric disorders, and that inhibiting COMT improves cognitive function. New COMT inhibitors are now being tested to see if they improve cognitive function in people with schizophrenia, who experience impairments in cognition. More recently we have expanded our focus to encompass genetic loci emerging from genome-wide association studies of psychiatric disorders, with the voltage-gated calcium channel and KALRN genes forming a major current area of investigation.
Our research has been funded by the Royal Society, the BBSRC, Wellcome, the MRC and industrial partners. We welcome contact from potential collaborators, students and the media.
Contact us to discuss potential MSc and DPhil projects, or for media comment
- Prof David Bannerman (Department of Experimental Psychology)
- Prof Paul Brennan (Centre for Medicines Discovery)
- Dr Wilfried Haerty (The Earlham Institute)
- Prof Paul Harrison (Department of Psychiatry)
- Dr Alejo Nevado-Holgado (Department of Psychiatry)
- Prof Trevor Sharp (Department of Pharmacology)
- Dr Mark Walton (Department of Experimental Psychology)
- Prof Daniel Weinberger (The Lieber Institute for Brain Development)
News and announcements
- Liz and Eleanor were delighted to take Switching Perceptions to London's Barbican Centre
- Liz and Eleanor were awarded a Vice Chancellor's Award for Public Engagement for their joint project, Switching Perceptions
- Congratulations to Nicola on being invited to deliver a plenary talk at London Calling
- Watch Liz's TEDx talk on genetics, the brain and mental health here
- Liz and Eleanor Minney have been awarded grants from the Royal Society and the University for their ongoing collaboration. Congratulations!
- Congratulations to the Tunbridge lab on their successful application for an MRC Project Grant to advance their work on calcium channels
- Congratulations to Liz Tunbridge for being awarded the BAP Senior Psychopharmacology Prize 2016
- Liz Tunbridge awarded an inaugural Vice Chancellor's Award for Public Engagement with Research