Environment, Development,

 Genetics & Epigenetics

 in Psychology and Psychiatry Lab 


At EDGE Lab, we investigate environmental, developmental, genetic, and epigenetic factors, and their interplay, in psychology and psychiatry. Specifically, our research focuses on vulnerability and resilience pathways and mechanisms for common mental disorders, such as depression and anxiety. Moreover, we explore the link between common mental disorders and physical and cognitive health and ageing. Our research is truly interdisciplinary; we use prospective longitudinal, cross-cultural, and genetically informative approaches to get insights into determinants and consequences of common mental disorders across the life course, generations and cultures. 

Research Themes


Our latest research on mental health and cognitive ageing: 

James SN, Davis D, O'Hare C, Sharmaa N, John A, Gaysina D, Hardy R, Kuh D. Lifetime affective problems and later-life cognitive state: over 50 years of follow-up in a British Birth Cohort Study. Journal of Affective Disorders, 2018, In press. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jad.2018.07.078

John A, Patel U, Rusted J, Richards M, Gaysina D. Affective problems and decline in cognitive state in older adults: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Psychological Medicine, 2018, In press. https:// doi.org/10.1017/S0033291718001137.

  * You can also read about this study in the Sussex Psychology Blog and the University of Sussex News.

   **It was featured in BBC Radio Sussex (0.42 minutes in) and has received worldwide media coverage.


Our new publications on genetics and mental health:

Koike S, Gaysina D, Jones PB, Wong A, Richards M. Catechol O-methyltransferase (COMT) functional haplotype is associated with recurrence of affective symptoms: A prospective birth cohort study. Journal of Affective Disorders, 2018; 229: 437-442. doi: 10.1016/j.jad.2017.12.044.

Gaysina D. Folic acid in pregnancy – MTHFR gene explains why the benefits may differ. The Conversation, 4th of May, 2018. 


Our books:

Book coverMalykh S, Kovas Y, and Gaysina D. (Eds.) Behavioural Genetics for Education. Palgrave Macmillan, 2016: ISBN 9781137437310. Available online

OblozhkaMalykh, S.B., Kovas, Y., Gaysina, D.A. (Eds) (2016). Behavioural Genomics: Child Development and Education. Publishing House of Tomsk State University, Tomsk. 442 pages. ISBN 978-5-94621-585-5 [pdf]


RT @Social2Bio: Polygenic risk scores are popping up all over the place. But are they suitable for social-to-biological research? H… twitter.com/i/web/status/1…

RT @JAMAPsych: Are children with #autism and #autistic traits at greater risk of #depression at age 18 years, and are genetic conf… twitter.com/i/web/status/1…

RT @L_Arseneault: American Journal of Public Health full September issue is now available. Presenting research on child abuse, malt… twitter.com/i/web/status/1…

RT @TheLancetPsych: New. Association between physical exercise and mental health in 1·2 million individuals in the USA between 2011 and… twitter.com/i/web/status/1…

RT @Emilydsw: Using DNA alone (a genome-wide polygenic score) it is now possible to predict 11-13% of the variance in educational… twitter.com/i/web/status/1…

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