Are you the parent of a child between the ages of 12-17 who has been diagnosed with schizophrenia, schizophreniform disorder, or schizoaffective disorder? If so, you and your child may be able to participate in a research study to help better understand the causes of mental illness. Some visits may be done virtually. Compensation provided.
Schizophrenia, schizophreniform disorder, and schizoaffective disorder are mental illnesses that can affect a person’s ability to think clearly, manage emotions, and interact with others. Researchers do not know what causes schizophrenia and related disorders, but family history, environmental factors, and abnormal brain chemistry or brain structure may play a role.
The purpose of this study is to help researchers better understand the relationship between thinking, genetics, brain structure, and brain function in people with schizophrenia and related disorders. Researchers will compare people with and without mental disorders, and hope their findings will lead to better ways to identify and treat mental illness in the future.
COULD THIS STUDY BE RIGHT FOR YOUR CHILD?
- Ages 12-17
- Diagnosed with schizophrenia, schizophreniform disorder, or schizoaffective disorder
- Willing and able to undergo MRI scanning (no non-removable metal in body, not claustrophobic)
- No history of head injury with loss of consciousness
- No first-degree relative (parent or sibling) diagnosed with schizophrenia or related disorder
- Not pregnant
- Child’s mother must also be willing to participate in study
WHAT PARTICIPANTS CAN EXPECT
This study involves an initial phone call and 2-hour virtual visit to find out if your child is eligible for the study. If your child is eligible, he or she will be scheduled for cognitive tests, MRI scan, computer assessments, a blood draw, and saliva sample collection. These tests will take a total of 5-6 hours to complete. Children will return for the same set of tests and procedures at 6 and 12 months. During the study, the parent will be asked to provide medical history and other information.
IRB:STUDY19030036A - Synaptic pruning and Complement Gene in Schizophrenia: Imaging and Cellular Studies
MEET THE RESEARCHER
Konasale M. Prasad, MD, is an Associate Professor of Psychiatry at the University of Pittsburgh. A graduate of the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, Dr. Prasad’s research interests include genetics and immunology, neurobiology and neuroimaging, and schizophrenia.