Depression Genetics in Africa (DepGenAfrica)


  • Prof Andrew McIntosh

    University of Edinburgh, United Kingdom

  • Prof Solomon Teferra

    Addis Ababa University, Ethiopia

  • Dr Chisomo Msefula

    University of Malawi, Malawi

  • Prof Gerome Breen

    King's College London, United Kingdom

  • Prof Michele Ramsay

    University of the Witwatersrand, South Africa

  • Prof James Walters

    Cardiff University, United Kingdom

  • Prof Taiwo Sheikh

    Ahmadu Bello University, Nigeria

  • Prof Amelia Crampin

    University of Glasgow, United Kingdom

Project summary

Understanding the combination of genetic and environmental risk factors that cause depression is key to developing new therapeutics and to relieving the increasing burden they place on societies and economies worldwide. While the last decade has seen huge advances in depression genetics, these have been in European and East Asian populations only. We urgently need to develop a better understanding of depression genetics in Africa populations to correct this inequity. Our consortium will study depression genetics and environmental/social risk factors in three different African countries, comparing the results with studies of African ancestry populations in Europe and the USA. While deepening psychiatric genetics expertise across Africa, we will apply the latest advanced statistical genetics methods to find genetic risk factors for depression that are specific to African populations and that are shared across populations.