Projects / Programmes source: ARIS

Genetic and neuropsychological indicators of increased suicidal risk - GENESuIS

Research activity

Code Science Field Subfield
3.09.00  Medical sciences  Psychiatry   

Code Science Field
B650  Biomedical sciences  Psychiatry, clinical psychology, psychosomatics 
suicide, risk factors, genes, neuropsychology
Evaluation (rules)
source: COBISS
Researchers (5)
no. Code Name and surname Research area Role Period No. of publicationsNo. of publications
1.  12768  PhD Andrej Marušič  Psychiatry  Head  2008  882 
2.  22821  PhD Saška Roškar  Psychiatry  Researcher  2008  351 
3.  29970  Sanja Temnik  Psychiatry  Researcher  2008  36 
4.  27742  PhD Alja Videtič Paska  Medical sciences  Researcher  2008  213 
5.  26232  Tina Žagar  Public health (occupational safety)  Researcher  2008  16 
Organisations (2)
no. Code Research organisation City Registration number No. of publicationsNo. of publications
1.  0381  University of Ljubljana, Faculty of Medicine  Ljubljana  1627066  45,364 
2.  1669  University of Primorska, Andrej Marušič Insitute  Koper  1810014007  10,496 
Suicidal behavior is attributable to many causes. A comprehensive method for identifying risk factors for suicide is to consider that they are composed of genetic and environmental influences and their interractions. High suicide rate in Slovenia is thus a consequence of genetic and environmental factors. Being lonely, divorced, widowed and living in stress are more important among environmental factors while history of suicide behavior in the family stands for genetic vulnerability. At higher risk for suicide are single, widowed and older people, people with mental disorders and lower education. Particularly at risk are people with depression, alcohol dependency syndrom, people with more pronounced impulsive and aggressive personality features and persons with previous suicide attempts. For example, previous suicide attempts can increase the suicide risk in the following year by a factor of 100, and presence of depressive disorder by a factor of 30. Suicide risk increases dramatically when factors, usually influencing independently of one another, interract. The present study will focus on risk factors in higher risk groups such as suicidal persons (i.e. persons with suicidal ideation) and persons with previous suicide attempts. This is a rather novel approach in the field of suicide research as we will include genetic and psychological factors linked with demographic data. We will use the analysis of certain polymorphisms to determine genetic risk factors, and psychological and cognitive tests to determine psychological factors. The ultimate outcome of our investigation will be valid factors which will enable an estimation of repetition of suicidal behaviour in the next year following an suicide attempt. A comprehensive coverage of most potential risk factors for suicidal behaviour will enable us to provide a global view of risk for a development of the suicidal behaviour in Slovenia and elsewhere.
Significance for science
Most studies so far have only focused on one risk factor. Evaluation of risk factors and even more so of their interplay enables a holistic comprehension and treatment of suicidal behavior. The present research thus offers practical implications for preventive actions. Studying of psychological characteristics will offer insight into cognitive and psychological characteristics of suicidal persons and enable prediciton of repeated suicidal behaviour. This will in turn lead to new knowledge on risk factors for suicidal beahviour and represent good basis for timely interventions and therapies.The latter is only possible when risk factors are being studied simoultaneously: - obtained genetic results and risk factors can contribute to the development of psychosocial and pharmacoterapeutic interventions, which will target persons at greater risk; - analysis of cognitive functions will reveal those personality and cognitive characteristics which respresent a risk for the development of suicidal behaviour; combining of these results can be the beggining of individual and group therapies targetting maladpative forms of behaviour.
Significance for the country
The results of the study will contribute to the greater level of public health in Slovenia by reducing the rates of Suicides. Furthermore this will directly result in disburden of the national health budget.
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