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Family studies
To investigate the transmission of
schizophrenia, studies compare rates of
schizophrenia is relatives of diagnosed
cases in relatives of controls.
First degree relatives share an average of
50% of their genes and second degree
relatives share an average of 25% of their
genes.
Therefore, if there is genetic transmission
involved in schizophrenia, we would expect
that the closer the biological relationship,
the greater the risk of developing
schizophrenia.…read more

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Evidence:
Kendler et al found a risk of 3.7% in first
degree relatives of people with
schizophrenia, as compared to a lifetime
risk in a normal control group of only
0.2%…read more

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The Copenhagen High-Risk
Study ­ Kety et al
A prospective, longitudinal study carried
out in Denmark beginning in 1962.
Kety et al identified 207 offspring of
mothers diagnosed with schizophrenia
(high-risk group) along with a matched
control of 104 children with healthy
mothers (low-risk group).
The children were matched on key
variables including age, gender and
parental socio-economical status…read more

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Results:
Schizophrenia was diagnosed in 16.2%
of the high-risk group compared with
1.9% in the low-risk group.
There was also a greater rate of
schizotypal personality disorder in the
high-risk group.
This seems to provide good evidence for
a genetic influence.…read more

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Evaluation of Kety et al
Advantage of a longitudinal prospective
study ­ does not rely on retrospective
data. The study was conducted over
several years ­ important because
schizophrenia can develop at any point
in an individual's life.
Children were matched on relevant
variables which is important because
factors such as socio-economic status
are known to be a risk factor in…read more

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