Rücklab visits professor Thalia Eley & EDIT lab at King’s college, London

Thalia Eley is professor of developmental behavioural genetics at SGDP centre, Institute of psychiatry, King’s College, London. She is also head of EDIT lab where the research focuses on the genetic and environmental effects on development and treatment of anxiety and depression amongst children.

IMG_0070Christian Rück, Thalia Eley, Evelyn Andersson, Julia Boberg & Chris
Rayner outside EDIT lab.

The EDIT lab team aim to explore why anxiety and depression disorders to some extend run in the family. On one hand they do twin studies to explore how much of variation in a phenotype, i.e. anxiety disorders, could be explained by genetic variance and on the other hand they perform studies on environmental factors to explore to what extent variation could be explained by nurture.

The BioPoRT project is a part of IAPT (Increasing access to psychological treatment) in the UK. The aim of  BioPoRT is to find predictors for treatment outcome, exploring both demographic variables as well as clinical and genetic factors. The latter is called therapygenetics, a term coined by Thalia Eley a few years ago.

Additionally the team do research on information processing.

We got a tour of the actual lab by the centre laboratory manager Bernard Freeman, where the whole genome sequencing (GWAS) is being executed. He showed us DNA extracted from salmon sperm and some very high tech machinery.

IMG_0077GWAS chip

IMG_0074Bernard Freeman with the double helix

The team also run the EDIT lab blog, a great source for novel research, interesting chronicles about bringing research into daily life hazzle (such as making your baby sleep) and the challenges one could face when working as a researcher.

Much of the work done at EDIT lab is related to the genetics work done at Rücklab, although our experience and knowledge in the field is a bit more scant. We look forward to future collaborations with the EDIT lab team.