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pounds 4m genetic research centre will be first of its kind in the UK.

A pounds 4M medical project investigating some of the most common mental conditions is being officially launched in Wales today with the aim of discovering cures for a range of brain disorders.

Scientists in Cardiff are being given the money to look into possible genetic causes of conditions such as schizo-phreniaAlzheimer's and Parkinson's disease and come up with possible treatments.

The research centre has been set up at Cardiff University with an initial five-year plan to investigate causes of mental illness and disorders, including depression, Huntington's disease and dyslexia.

Professor Mike Owen of Radvances to identify new genes which put people at risk of brain disorders. We then want to work out how these genes affect the brain and, ultimately, start building treatments which can tackle these terrible diseases.

"Our research needs a large amount of data from a large number of volunteers and public support is vital. However, a great many myths and taboos still surround both mental illness and genetics. We aim to break down these barriers."

The backing for the centre by the Medical Research Council is the first in the UK to support research into degenerative mental disorders.

The centre is being opened by First Minister Rhodri Morgan, who said: "Mental illnesses are such a high priority that the prospect of using the latest genetic research to improve the chances of finding cures has to be worthy of public investment and support."

UNDER THE MICROSCOPE: The special research centre at Cardiff University will investigate possible genetic causes and treatments of mental disorders

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UNDER THE MICROSCOPE: The special research centre at Cardiff University will investigate possible genetic causes and treatments of mental disorders
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Publication:Western Mail (Cardiff, Wales)
Geographic Code:4EUUK
Date:Jul 2, 2009
Words:278
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