Opinion Outpost

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Depression Study up to $100

Please consider taking part in a nationwide research study sponsored by the NATIONAL INSTITUTE OF MENTAL HEALTH. The study will create a DNA collection from over 2,700 people to permit scientists to search for depression-related genes. These scientists will not be given any information that could identify you or your family. BENEFITS OF PARTICIPATING: • Help us with this difficult task. • Finding relevant genes could lead to the development of better treatments. WHO CAN PARTICIPATE? • People who have had 2 or more periods of depression. • The first depression started by age 30 or younger. • At least one brother, sister, or parent has also had depression (by age 40 or younger). • We are unable to include people with bipolar disorder, or with bipolar disorder in the immediate family. IF YOU VOLUNTEER: • You will be interviewed about your personal and family mental health history. • You do not need to live near our site. Interviews can be completed by phone. • You will be asked for a blood specimen for DNA studies. This can be done in your own home or in our office. • You may be asked for help in inviting family members to participate, but family participation is not required. • Confidentiality is protected. DO GENES CAUSE DEPRESSION? Studies of depression in families suggest that around 50% of the predisposition to major depression is caused by genes. People with recurrent depression that starts at a younger age have more relatives with depression. There are probably many interacting genes, rather than a single gene as in some medical disorders. WHY FIND THESE GENES? Identifying these genes would help us to understand the brain mechanisms involved in severe depression. This could lead to discovery of new treatments. FOR MORE INFORMATION: Phone: (212) 543-6520 or 543-5020 Email: sibhealth@childpsych.columbia.edu Internet: www.nyspi.org/depression *This is not a part-time job. Compensation is being provided for participation in a research study.

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