Same genes, different disorders: understanding the developmental emergence of different psychiatric problems in the context of common genetic liabilities (MoBa-Dev)

Project description and people for MoBaDev


Recent efforts to identify common genetic variants associated with risk for psychiatric disorders have shown that genetic risk is more generalized than disorder-specific. However, even people with a common genetic ‘starting point’ go on to develop specific symptom profiles that are recognizable to clinicians as distinct disorders, and for which different treatments are effective. So why, in the context of predominantly generalized genetic risk, do specific disorders emerge? Are there environmental exposures or developmental processes that contribute to symptom differentiation throughout an individual’s lifespan? Are the effects of subtle differences in individuals’ genetic risk profiles amplified over time? The MoBa-Dev project proposes to address these questions by applying a unique combination of methods to data from the Norwegian Mother, Father, and Child Cohort Study (MoBa). With access to newly-released genetic and questionnaire data, the MoBa-Dev team will model the emergence of distinct symptom profiles in early adolescence, triangulating across different approaches to identify processes that contribute to differentiating risk for psychiatric disorders developmentally. An international team of collaborators will facilitate replications and extensions in other large, genotyped cohort studies. The ultimate goal of this research is to contribute to provide clinicians with actionable and specific information about who is at risk, and for which psychiatric disorders.

Contact person: 

Laurie Hannigan



A man wearing glasses

Adrian Dahl Askelund

PhD student
Last updated 1/29/2024