All Posts By

Rosa Gillespie Cheesman

Extracting stability gives a more powerful and heritable measure of emotional problems

By | Research Matters

This blog explains our latest publication in which we analysed Twins Early Development Study data on emotional problems across childhood and adolescence. Accurate assessment is difficult but essential if we are to understand the influences on emotional problems. We took advantage of longitudinal data (i.e. taken across time) to define…

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N for Neuroticism

By | A-Z

Neuroticism is a personality trait characterised by easily experiencing negative emotions. This A-Z blog offers some highlights of what is currently known about the genetic and environmental influences on neuroticism, as well as its overlap with and relevance for psychiatric disorders.

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Measurement and the heritability gap for childhood behaviour problems

By | Research Matters

Decades of twin studies have shown that childhood behaviour problems including anxiety, depression, conduct and hyperactivity are substantially heritable. However, our recent research found that individual differences in behaviour problems are not significantly influenced by the common DNA differences that we directly measure. This finding held across diverse domains of…

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Data: real or reified?

By | Research Matters

Data are perceived by some as a kind of currency, a source of boundless knowledge, with the potential to prevent suffering and death. However, taking a closer look at the etymology of the word prompts careful reconsideration of our assumptions about – and uses of – data in the context of psychiatry.

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Microbes and mates

By | Research Matters

Microbiome research has not yet reshaped our conceptions of mental health etiology and treatment (see my previous article), but it should be causing havoc in the social sciences – particularly for anthropologists, who have long sought to understand cross-cultural conceptions of the ‘individual’ and ‘relatedness’.

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Microbes and minds

By | Research Matters

 It might surprise you that your body is made up of only 10% human cells. There are trillions of microscopic creatures living and dying all over you, and these are particularly diverse and numerous in the human gut. Mounting evidence suggests that microbes aren’t all enemies but are vital to…

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