• Austin, Jehannine


    Investigator, BC Children's Hospital
    Executive Director, BC Mental Health and Addictions Research Institute
    Associate Professor, Department of Psychiatry, UBC Faculty of Medicine
    Associate Professor, Department of Medical Genetics, UBC Faculty of Medicine
    Canada Research Chair in Translational Psychiatric Genomics

    Degrees / Designations

    PhD, MSc (Genetic Counselling) CCGC/ CGC

    Primary Area of Research
    Brain, Behaviour & Development
    Secondary Area(s) of Research
    604-875-2000 ext. 5943
    Lab Phone
    Mailing Address

    Translational Lab Building
    Room A3-112 – 3rd Floor
    938 W 28th Ave
    Vancouver, BC V5Z 4H4

    Research Areas
    • Genetics 
    • Human development
    • Reproductive health
    • Risk factors
    • Socio-behavioural

    Psychiatric disorders are complex conditions that – in broad terms – arise as a result of genetic and environmental vulnerability factors acting together. Progress is now being made towards understanding the causes of these conditions more specifically, and there is an urgent need to translate this into benefit for individuals with psychiatric disorders and their families.

    The overall objective of my program of research is to use a clinical genetics perspective to inform the development of novel biological and non-biological interventions to improve outcomes for individuals with psychiatric disorders and to support their families.

    I am particularly interested in:

    • Improving outcomes for people with mental illness and their families by helping them to better understand the causes of mental illness.
    • Contributing to a better understanding of factors that contribute to the development of postpartum depression, and developing new nutritional interventions to reduce women’s risk for postpartum depression.
    • Modifying healthcare professional’s attitudes towards individuals with mental illness.
    Current Projects
    Selected Publications

    Inglis A, Koehn D, McGillivray B, Stewart E, Austin J. Evaluating a unique, specialist psychiatric genetic counseling clinic: uptake and impact. Clinical Genetics 2015, 87(3) 218-224. PMC4318688. PMID: 24773225

    Lohn Z, Inglis A, Austin J, and Hippman C. A ‘cure’ for Down syndrome: What do parents want? Clinical Genetics 2014. 86(4):310-7 PMC4055389. PMID: 24548046

    Ashtiani S, Makela N, Carrion P, Austin J. Parents’ Experiences of Receiving their Child’s Genetic Diagnosis: A Qualitative Study to Inform Clinical Genetics Practice. American Journal of Medical Genetics 2014, 164(6) 1496-1502 PMC4039554. PMID: 24706543

    Austin J, Inglis A, Hadjipavlou G. Genetic counseling for common psychiatric disorders: an opportunity for interdisciplinary collaboration. American Journal of Psychiatry. 2014, 171 584-585. PMC4111654. PMID: 24788289

    Inglis A, Hippman C, Carrion P, Honer WG, Austin JC. Mania and depression in the perinatal period among women with a history of major depressive disorders. Archives of Womens Mental Health 2014, 17(2) 137-43 PMCID: PMC3961475. PMID: 24402681

    Maio M, Carrion P, Yaremco E, Austin JC. Awareness of genetic counseling amongst the Canadian public and perceptions of its purpose. Journal of Genetic Counseling 2013, 22(6) 762-770. PMCID: PMC3825692. PMID: 23963834

    Hippman C, Lohn Z, Inglis A, Ringrose A, Cheek A, Austin JC. “Nothing is absolute in life": Understanding uncertainty in the context of psychiatric genetic counseling from the perspective of those with serious mental illness. Journal of Genetic Counseling 2013 22(5) 625-632 PMCID: PMC3776779. PMID: 23604904

    Morris, E., Inglis, A., Friedman, J., & Austin, J.C. (2013). Discussing the psychiatric manifestations of 22q11.2 deletion syndrome: an exploration of clinical practice among medical geneticists. Genetics in Medicine, 15(9) 713-720. PMCID: 3766374

    Austin, J.C., Hippman, C., & Honer, W.G. (2012). Descriptive and numeric estimation of risk for psychotic disorders among affected individuals and relatives: implications for clinical practice. 
    Psychiatric Research, 196(1) 52-6. PMCID: 3723521

    Anderson, K., & Austin, J.C. (2012). Effects of a documentary film on public stigma related to mental illness among genetic counselors. 
    Journal of Genetic Counseling, 21(4):573-81. PMCID: 3706328

    Hippman, C., Inglis, A., & Austin, J.C. (2012). What is a “balanced” description? Insight from parents of individuals with Down syndrome. 
    Journal of Genetic Counseling, 21(1): 35-44. PMCID: 3706329

    Lautenbach D., Hiraki, S., Whalen Campion, M., & Austin, J.C. (2012).
    Mothers’ perspectives on their child’s mental illness as compared to other complex disorders in their family: insights to inform genetic counseling practice. Journal of Genetic Counseling, 21: 564-72. PMCID: 3753288

    Inglis A., Hippman, C., & Austin, J.C. (2012). Prenatal testing for Down Syndrome: Perspectives of parents of affected individuals. American Journal of Medical Genetics, 158A (4), 743-50.

    Michalak, E.E., Hole, R., Holmes, C., Velyvis, V., Austin, J.C., Pesut, B., & Hou, S. (2012). “Recovery is Such a Huge Word”: Understandings of ‘Recovery’ in People with Bipolar Disorder and Implications for Psychiatric Care
    Psychiatric Annals, 42(5), 173-178.

    Chan, R.C.K., Austin, J.C., Pearson, V.J, Gong, Q., & Honer, W.G. (2011). Translating genomic research into care for people with schizophrenia in China. Schizophrenia Research, 131:31-34. 
    PMCID: 3706332

    Peay, H.L., & Austin, J.C. (2011). 
    How To Talk To Families About Genetics and Psychiatric Disorders. New York, NY: WW Norton and Company. [link]

    McBride, R., & Austin, J.C. (2011). Sex Testing Or Gender Verification: Is There A Difference and Does It Matter? 
    Journal of Genetic Counseling, 20, 113-114. PMID: 21165684


    CIHR Transitional Open Operating Grant - Project: "A sex-based, prospective longitudinal study of variables influencing the mental health of children born to women with psychiatric disorders"

    Honours & Awards
    Research Group Members