K.C. Becker1, I.O. Idowu1,

W.H. Wood III1, K. Gray1, M.P. Vawter2

1DNA Array Unit, NIA, NIH,

Baltimore, MD; 2Department of Psychiatry, University of California at

Irvine, Irvine, CA

Schizophrenia affects approximately 1%

of the general population and accounts for significant morbidity and long term

disability.  cDNA arrays, or Gene Chips, allow for the simultaneous

analysis of gene expression patterns in thousands of gene targets.  A

number of groups, including ours, have performed cDNA array analysis on autopsy

brain specimens of schizophrenic patients versus controls.  In these early

experiments some results seemed to have replicated while others did not. 

In all cases, the sample number was low and the amount of RNA per sample was

limiting.  Here we show the assembly of the first generation of a

specialized collection of cDNAs which has been made into filter arrays. 

Filter arrays are particularly useful when RNA sample quantity is limiting. This

array will be used in further study of schizophrenic samples.  The assembly

of this array, NPSY 1.0 (Neuropsychiatric 1.0) involved three steps: 1)

bioinformatic selection of candidate genes, 2) isolation of individual bacterial

clones of interest and 3) preparation and printing of the array.  The size

of this array, NPSY 1.0, is currently 384 genes.  It will continue to grow

to at least 1152 genes by informatic selection and by clone acquisition. 

When complete, this array will be made freely available for use in further

studies of schizophrenia.  Data from the use of this array will be

deposited in a publicly available gene expression database.