Does DNA methylation influence the effects of psychiatric drugs?

Written by Alice Weatherston

The introduction, in the middle of the last century, of specific drug treatments for schizophrenia, bipolar illness and depression brought relief to many of those suffering from these disorders. Subsequently developed drugs have offered some improvements in tolerability, through changes in side effect profiles, but not more than marginal changes in efficacy. Thus severe mental illness, despite the undoubted value of current pharmacotherapy, still represents a huge economic and social burden, reflecting the limited efficacy of drug treatments. Treatment of depression achieves response rates of little more than 50%, while even lower proportions of people with schizophrenia achieve adequate symptom...

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