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RG Translational Research in Psychosis


Vice Chairman of the Department, Head of the Research Group

Prof. Dr. F. Markus Leweke

Phone: +49 621 1703-2321

Fax: +49 621 1703-2305


Assistant: Silvia Adum-Batista e-mail
Phone: +49 621 1703-2322, Fax: -2305

Main Medical Building, 1st Floor, Room 112


The workgroup was established in 2009 and is focused on the development of new therapeutic and diagnostic approaches for psychotic disorders with a particular emphasis on schizophrenia and bipolar disorder. In addition, the group aims to join forces within the department and the institute in the preparation and performance of translational clinical trials and was deeply involved in the development of the concept of the Center for Innovative Research in Psychiatry and Psychotherapy.

During the first years of operation of the group at CIMH, we were able to successfully lead, perfom and conclude three workpackages of the EU-funded SchizDX project, an approach to the development of blood based biological marker sets for schizophrenia and other psychiatric disorders. In parallel, our biobank of more than 1,000 CSF, serum, DNA and mRNA samples of extensively characterized psychiatric patients and healthy controls has been moved to Mannheim and continuously extended at CIMH (about 300 additional full sample sets as well as an additional set of about 700 samples without CSF). This remains the basis for several international collaborations with the Johns Hopkins University, USA, the University of Uetrecht, NL, and the Columbia University, USA.

In collaboration with the Department of Genetic Epidemiology, we were able to develop a DNA and a mRNA chip covering the entire endocannabinoid system as it is currently known. Despite several setbacks regarding the availability of new chemical entities and the endocannabinoid modulator cannabidiol in particular, we were able to recently initiate a phase I clinical trial testing a new formulation of cannabidiol and its interaction with several antipsychotics. This study in healthy volunteers also provides the opportunity to study the effects of risperidone, olanzapine, amisulpride and quetiapine vs. placebo on brain structure and function, a joint approach with the workgroup SNiP.

Zentralinstitut für Seelische Gesundheit (ZI) - https://www.zi-mannheim.de