Defense Date


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science


Human Genetics

First Advisor

Timothy York


Genetic epidemiology has shown a large role for genetic influences on schizophrenia. However, the nature of the variants involved is debated. The common disease-common variant (CDCV) hypothesis suggests that schizophrenia is caused by common alleles with small effect sizes. According to the common disease-rare variant (CDRV) hypothesis, schizophrenia is caused by rare variants with large effect sizes. In recent years, evidence has been found for both common and rare variants in schizophrenia. Several SNPs have been associated with schizophrenia through genome-wide association studies (GWAS), supporting the CDCV hypothesis. In support of the CDRV hypothesis, individuals with schizophrenia have been found to have a higher burden of rare copy-number variants (CNVs). Also, several specific rare CNVs have been associated with schizophrenia. The exact mechanisms of these variants are unknown, but common and rare variants appear to affect many of the same pathways in the etiology of schizophrenia.


© The Author

Is Part Of

VCU University Archives

Is Part Of

VCU Theses and Dissertations

Date of Submission

August 2011