There is large variation in the course of psychiatric disorders and in their response to drugs. This variation stems from a variety of factors including disease heterogeneity due to the presence of different clinical and biological subtypes. Additionally, differences in the interaction of a drug with its targets and individual rates in the ability to metabolize a drug are important in determining treatment outcomes and disease courses. Center for Translational Psychiatry aims at gaining new knowledge about clinical and biological markers determining the course of psychiatric disorders, in particular ADHD and autism, and promote implementation of these findings in the clinic.

Φ Genetic variation in the gene encoding Carboxylesterase 1 (CES1) and personalization of drugs metabolized this enzyme
– CES1 metabolizes a variety of commonly used drugs including methylphenidate. Variation in the gene encoding this enzyme may affect the rate of metabolism of these drugs and give rise to altered blood levels of these drugs, thus leading to altered drugs responses.
– Our center aims at identifying novel variants of CES1 and evaluates the clinical relevance of them.

Φ Longitudinal medication pattern of children with ADHD
– Moderate to severe ADHD requires pharmacological treatment, where methylphenidate is the first-line drug. In the event of lack of response to this drug or unacceptable adverse reactions, methylphenidate is replaced by another drug.
– A relative large number of children treated with ADHD as first-line drug experience adverse reactions and are switched to another drug. The time from initiation of treatment with methylphenidate to switch to another drug was unexpected high. We are currently seeking further understanding of these and other issues related to pharmacological treatment of ADHD.
– Our center aims at understanding and identifying causes underlying choice of drug and drug switches in the treatment of ADHD.

Φ Trajectories of children with autism spectrum disorders
– Autism spectrum disorders represent a group of serious disorders with large variation in causes, symptoms and disease courses. Chromosomal abnormalities play a role in some cases of this group of disorders and may also give rise to comorbidities such as epilepsy.
– Our center aims at providing insights into the “journey” of children autims spectrum disorders through the hospital system.