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News Brief: ENCODE Explained to the Rest of Us

11 April 2013. For those still grappling with the 34-paper gorilla published by the ENCODE project last year (see SRF related news story), you’ll have a second chance in a new review published online March 12 in Molecular Psychiatry. In a mere three pages, first author David Kavanagh and colleagues at Cardiff University, U.K., explain what ENCODE was about, the type of methods it used, the kinds of data it generated, and what it means for psychiatric genetics. Basically, ENCODE identified parts of the genome that prepare DNA for transcription, and provided job descriptions for regions where disease-associated variants often lie. Bottom line: For a disease-associated variant, the nearest gene needn’t be the go-to culprit anymore.—Michele Solis.

Kavanagh DH, Dwyer S, O'Donovan MC, Owen MJ. The ENCODE project: implications for psychiatric genetics. Mol Psychiatry. 2013 Mar 12. Abstract

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