Risk factors and outcome in schizophrenia – meta-analyses and translational internet database

Schizophrenia and other psychotic disorders are a severe public health problem afflicting about 3 % of humans. The risk factors and outcomes of schizophrenia are still largely unknown. There have been reviews and meta-analyses on some risk factors, but the overall picture of the disease is very unclear. There is an urgent need for systematically collected database on epidemiology of schizophrenia for use of clinicians and researchers, as the amount of information increases exponentially. It is impossible for any researcher or clinician to have a clear picture on various aspects of the research. The aim is to build a translational internet database where clinicians and researchers can find and analyze previous studies on schizophrenia. The database will be based on meta-analyses of the previous research on risk factors and aspects of outcome in schizophrenia.

The research team has long experience of original and meta-analytic studies on schizophrenia. Random effect meta-analysis and meta-regression are used when analysing studies. The aim is to publish meta-analyses first as scientific articles and then post all data to a designated and publicly available internet site. The results of meta-analyses will be used to build translational database where e.g. researchers can predict risk for schizophrenia and clinicians can predict outcomes using probabilities based on the results of meta-analyses.

The amount of current literature on risk factors and outcome in schizophrenia is huge, it is impossible for any researcher or clinician to have a clear picture on the illness. The translational internet database is likely to be scientifically and clinically important. The database would help researchers and clinicians analyse the huge literature on these topics efficiently which is a large advantage both in research and in clinical work. The database would be unique, and could be used as an example for similar databases for other psychiatric and somatic disorders.