If successful, the study could help to detect eating disorders at an early stage.
Genetic study of eating disorders such as bulimia and anorexia could provide a way to prevent them from surfacing in a person’s life.
While most studies before delved into the psychological aspects of eating disorders, the researchers at the University College London have aimed to see genetics’ role so as to be able to provide new treatments or drugs.
Dr Clare Llewellyn, the lead of the research team, says: “In the field, what’s been talked about more is the social things, the extent to which the parent talks to the child about the child’s weight and their own weight and whether their parents have eating disorders. What we don’t know is the child’s own traits and predispositions.”
“There is a huge dearth in funding into mental health research, especially in eating disorders. This leaves too many people without the information and support they need. The potential of this project is significant, from informing parents on healthy eating practices through to setting the stage for the development of new treatments,” she added.
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