We do both qualitative and quantitative research depending on which is the best approach to address the questions that are most important to study. We are interested in doing research that makes a difference to people who have historically been marginalized in medical contexts, especially people with psychiatric conditions and their families, and people who have not had access to genetic services. We have had many individual projects that fall into the following broad topic areas:

  • Developing evidence-based practice in psychiatric genetic counselling

    Our research has led to the development of a new service for people who live with psychiatric conditions and their families, called psychiatric genetic counselling. Our research has shown that psychiatric genetic counselling can make important differences for people who live with psychiatric conditions and their families (see publications section). We continue to explore ways to make psychiatric genetic counselling more effective, and to explore different effects that it might have. For example, we are exploring:
    • how best to use psychiatric genetic counselling to help families who are living with 22q11 deletion syndrome, and
    • whether psychiatric genetic counselling helps people to improve their own mental health

Although the clinic we established was closed in 2023, we continue to find ways to ensure access to genetic counseling for people with psychiatric conditions, for example, through embedding genetic counselors in primary care. As well, others around the world have now established psychiatric genetic counseling clinics

  • Understanding predictors of Mental Health problems

    We are interested in understanding the roles that genetics and environmental factors play in determining whether or not someone develops a mental health problem. We are interested in the factors that contribute to developing mental health problems in the postpartum period (see our publications section), and what sorts of factors contribute to children developing mental health problems.
  • Pharmacogenetic testing for depression treatment

    The TGRC team has been involved in some work on this topic as part of a project, co-led by J9 and Stirling Bryan. Read more about the pharmacogenetic testing for depression project.

  • Integrating GCs into primary care

    We are interested in thinking about what the future of genetic counselling services might look like. Historically, genetic counselling has been a service for which patients need a referral to visit a specialist clinic. This might create all sorts of barriers to access for people. So, we are interested in exploring how to integrate genetic counselors into primary care practice settings - we are working on this as part of the bigger GenCOUNSEL project