Disorders such as autism, bipolar disorder, depression, drug addiction, schizophrenia, and traumatic stress afflict more than 20 percent of the population. Combined, they represent a burden of illness that surpasses that of cancer and heart disease. Moreover, neuropsychiatric conditions affect our most human traits — emotions and feelings — and are extremely challenging to understand and cure.
Despite these obstacles, researchers have gained new knowledge of the genetic and nongenetic causes of these conditions. This new understanding will guide their ability to treat the disorders in the years ahead and lead them to major advances. The Friedman Brain Institute is playing a principal role in identifying the causes of neuropsychiatric conditions, developing objective diagnostic tests for these disorders, and generating novel and more effective treatments.