April 30, 2013

Welcome to another issue of the Heinz C. Prechter Bipolar Research Fund's e-newsletter! We hope you'll find this issue interesting and we welcome any suggestions for future e-newsletter topics. Please email your ideas to Kat Bergman, Marketing & Communications Director for the Prechter Fund (kbergman@umich.edu).

Press Release: Do drugs for bipolar disorder “normalize” brain gene function?

Stem cells like these will help scientists learn more about bipolar

Brain tissue study shows gene expression in patients treated with antipsychotics is similar to expression in non-bipolar brains

ANN ARBOR, Mich. — Every day, millions of people with bipolar disorder take medicines that help keep them from swinging into manic or depressed moods. But just how these drugs produce their effects is still a mystery.

Now, a new University of Michigan Medical School study of brain tissue helps reveal what might actually be happening. And further research using stem cells programmed to act like brain cells is already underway.

Using genetic analysis, the new study suggests that certain medications may help “normalize” the activity of a number of genes involved in communication between brain cells. It is published in the current issue of Bipolar Disorders.

The study involved brain tissue from deceased people with and without bipolar disorder, which the U-M team analyzed to see how often certain genes were activated, or expressed. Funding support came from the National Institutes of Health and the Heinz C. Prechter Bipolar Research Fund. (read more)

Cookbook for Sale to Benefit the Prechter Fund

Our friend and loyal supporter, Sue Ferus-Mancuso, of the Eric Ferus Foundation, has been collecting recipes from friends and family, in order to publish a wonderful cookbook whose sale will benefit our cutting-edge research. The cookbook contains 154 recipes from all over, some over 100 years old, as well as substitutes, helpful hints, poems, calorie counter, and food for thought. If you would like to order one of those unique, one-of-a-kind cookbooks, please email Sue at smancuso@wowway.com. The books are $25, which includes shipping.

Sue says: "One nice thing with a cookbook is that you can scan the recipes fast to see what you may like, instead of searching online trying to figure it out." Also, these books make great gifts! Please support Sue and her efforts to raise funds for our research programs!

Successful Partnership with Big Boy Comes to a Close

The Prechter Fund partnered with Big Boy restaurants during the months of February and March. 27 restaurants displayed a donation can and informational brochures about the Prechter Fund, and we are happy to report that almost $1,500 was raised to support our research programs. Not only was this a fund-raiser, but an awareness-raiser as well – some people called us and have since become research participants. A big thank you to Big Boy for all their support!

Two New Personal Accounts

Please check out our web page “Living with Bipolar Disorder” to read two newly added personal accounts:

"I Am What I Am"
by Maddie S.
"Why I Participate in Research"
by Catherine S.

The Prechter Fund on Facebook

If you enjoy reading our e-newsletter, you’d love being our Facebook friend! Just visit our Facebook page and click the “Like” button. We post news articles, good-to-know items, research news and new event announcements to this page several times per week.

For suggestions for future e-newsletter topics, please email your ideas to kbergman@umich.edu.



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