Towards Personalised Medicine in Psychiatry
A molecular understanding of underlying disease processes is a fundamental prerequisite if pre-symptomatic diagnostics and high value therapeutics are to be developed. The use of global molecular profiling techniques of post mortem brain tissue can help to elucidate fundamental disease mechanisms, reveal disease sub-types, and identify novel drug targets. However, if biomarkers can also be found in readily accessible body fluids, such as cerebrospinal fluid, serum, urine or saliva, and measured over time, they open up the possibility of predicting and monitoring treatment response and compliance, aiding patient stratification and developing new early or pre-symptomatic treatments to improve outcomes or even prevent pathology. With current subjective diagnostic methods early intervention is rare; however, when applied, substantial reductions in the number of inpatient days and the time to remission were achieved. Therefore, readily-available objective tests providing earlier and more accurate diagnosis of the disease will deliver not only improved patient outcomes but will also reduce the overall cost of neuropsychiatric disorders to the healthcare services and society.
Next to diagnostic signatures we aim to identify markers of disease course and treatment response.
The identification of a personalised signature based on the peripheral proteome could lead to a specifically tailored treatment for an individual patient.