News at the Laboratory of Human Genome Variation at
Our study on a unique neurodegenerative phenotype to appear in "Neurobiology of Aging"
March 15, 2016
collaboration with Prof. Kovacs from the Medical University of Vienna,
we present a whole exome sequencing study of a family with a unique
neurodegenerative phenotype. (Familial early-onset dementia with complex neuropathological phenotype and genomic background. John Alexander; Ognian Kalev; Shima Mehrabian; Latchezar Mirjam I Lutz; Latchezar Traykov; Margariata Raycheva; Dimitrios Kanakis; Petros Drineas;
Thomas Ströbel; Thomas Penz; Michael Schuster;
Christoph Bock; Isidro Ferrer; Peristera Paschou: Gabor
Kovacs, Neurobiology of Aging, in press).
Hands-on Genetic Epidemiology Workshop organised by the Paschou lab
October 27, 2015Symposium
and hands-on training workshop organised by the Paschou lab: Population
Genetic Structure and Genomewide Association Studies. Dr Eleftheria Zeggini from
the Sanger Institute joins us as keynote speaker to introduce us to
"Next generation association studies". The full programme is available here.
The first farmers were also sailors!
June 9, 2014
Our study on a "Maritime route of colonization of Europe"
appears in the Proceedings of National Academy of Sciences (PNAS).
We show for the first time that a prominent route of Neolithic
expansion into Europe was through island-hoping from the Anatolian
coast. Up until now, a hypothesis of migration by land through the
Balkans had mostly been favoured. Our data suggest that Crete and the
islands of the Aegean acted as a bridge connecting Anatolia to
Dr. Paschou receives EXCELLENCE Award
(ARISTEIA II) to study the genetic structure of the Greek populations
and hellenic diaspora
January 3, 2014
Coordinated by Dr.
Peristera Paschou, the proposal entitled
«GENOMAP.GR: A genomic reference map of Greece. Studying the
structure and history of Greek sub-populations and the Hellenic
diaspora» was recently funded under the “ARISTEIA II” programme
(EXCELLENCE AWARD). The programme “ARISTEIA II” is co-financed by
the European Social Fund and National Funds in the framework of the Operational
Programme “Education and Lifelong Learning”.
The structure and demographic history of the Greek
population is very complex depicting a mosaic of historical events and
including Greek sub-groups that maintain distinct traditions and private
dialects. This rich history must have contributed to substantial heterogeneity,
which remains until now unexplored and is the focus of this study. In
collaboration with Dr. George Stamatoyannopoulos, Professor of Genome Sciences
at the University of Washington, and Dr. Petros Drineas, Associate Professor of
Computer Science at Rensselaer University, Dr. Paschou will coordinate the
creation of a detailed genomic reference map of Greek sub-populations.
Analyzing genomewide data, this study
will help document and preserve the history of self-defined Hellenic
sub-groups, that are culturally and linguistically unique, but are being lost
due to panmixia and population movements. Furthermore, results will have great
importance for understanding the history of human migrations into Europe, while
the biobank that will be established will prove an invaluable resource for the
study of the genetic etiology of complex human disorders in Greece with a
potential major impact on public health.
Our study of ancient DNA sheds light into the origin of the Minoans
May 14, 2013
Dr. Paschou played a central role in a study which appeared today in Nature Communications
Comparing more than 14,000 mitochondrial DNA sequences of 135 ancient
and modern populations to ancient samples from the Minoan era (5,000
years before present) the team showed that the Minoans are most closely
related to Europeans and not African populations. Dr. Paschou, who led
statistical analysis in collaboration with Dr. Petros Drineas at the
Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, underlines: "The fact that modern day
inhabitants of Crete still carry the maternal genetic signature of the
Minoans is quite striking." and continues "This study is an excellent
example of the power of interdisciplinarity for the study of population
genetics." The study was led by Prof. George Stamatoyannopoulos of the
University of Washingthon.
Dr. Peristera Paschou joins the Editorial Board of PLOS ONE!
July 1, 2012
Peristera Paschou just joined the Editorial Board of PLOS ONE
as Academic Editor. PLOS ONE
an international, peer-reviewed journal that pioneered open-access and
online scientific publications. It welcomes reports on primary research
from any scientific discipline, providing they contribute significantly
to the base of science. From the position of Academic Editor, Dr.
Paschou would like to invite you to submit your original work and enjoy
fast publication times, and a broad audience.
TS-EUROTRAIN: Our proposal for a Marie Curie Initial Traning Network for Tourette Syndrome is successful!
June 16, 2012
Peristera Paschou is the coordinator of TS-EUROTRAIN: A Marie Curie Initial Training Network
for Tourette Syndrome which was just awarded EU support of 3,000,000 Euros
is a striking lack in structured and standardized training infrastructure for neurodevelopmental
disorders across Europe. Such training will be fundamental to promoting
standards of care across Europe and will ultimately lead to strategies for the
promotion of childhood mental health. Gilles de la Tourette Syndrome (TS), an
inherited neuropsychiatric disorder that provides an excellent paradigm for the
study and training needs for neurodevelopmental disorders of childhood onset. We
will establish a comprehensive interdisciplinary and intersectorial training
program in the field of TS and related disorders, that will deliver the next
generation of young researchers who will shape the field in Europe and around
is coordinated by Dr. Peristera Paschou at the
Dept. of Molecular Biology and Genetics, Democritus University of
Thrace and the interdisciplinary team includes academic experts
from the University of Ulm, the Hannover Medical School, Utrecht
University Medical Center Groningen, Semmelweis University, and the
Center. Building bridges
between academia and industry, the participation of three partners from the
private sector who are leading experts in their fields, will be instrumental in
the training that the Early Stage Researchers (ESRs) will receive, providing
the insight of the private sector to our ITN (deCODE Genetics, SENSA BV, and Boehringer
Ingelheim Pharma GmbH & Co. KG.
The European Society for the Srudy of TS and COST Action BM0905 host a Tourette Syndrome Awareness Week in Catania, Italy
June 6, 2012
and COST Action BM0905
both chaired by Dr.
Peristera Paschou, welcome you at a TS Awareness week in the beautiful
city of Catania in Sicily, kindly hosted by Prof. Renata Rizzo and the
University of Catania. Join us for a Traning School on TS Clinical Instruments, the 2012 ESSTS Annual Meeting and COST International Conference for TS
highlighting the most recent scientific developments in the field of
TS. This year, our meetings are open to TS patient groups and the 1st
International Meeting of TS Support and Advocacy Groups, is also taking
place on Saturday, June 9, bringing together 10 patient groups from
across Europe in order to coordinate outreach activities for TS and
raise public awareness.
The GR-DIAGENES Consortium receives funding by the EU and Greek programme "Thalis"
October 20, 2011
Peristera Paschou will coordinate the GR-DIAGENES consortium, supported
by the programme THALIS (ESPA and EU funding). The title of the
project is "The Genetic Architecture of Type 2 Diabetes in the Greek
Population" and the study will aim to establish a large biobank of T2DM
as well as a national database for the disorder. The team will aim to
elucidate the genetic basis of T2DM susceptibility as well as
personalized management and prognosis. Participating insititutions
include, the Democritus University of Thrace, the Aristotle University
of Thessaloniki, the University of Patras, as well as the Rensselaer
Polytechnick Institute and McGill University.
Our work on replicating SLITRK1 association with Tourette Syndrome to appear in Molecular Psychiatry
October 13, 2011
This large scale study represents the collaborative effort of the
TSGeneSEE consortium as well as collaborators from Germany and Canada.
We find significant association with a SLITRK1 haplotype in a sample of
376 trios with TS (Karagiannidis et al in press). Molecular
Psychachiatry is the top journal in the field of Psychiatry and number
4 in Neurosciences.
Peristera Paschou is elected the new Chair of the European
Society for the Study of Tourette Syndrome
May 14, 2011
the 2011 Annual Meeting of ESSTS in London (May 13-14), Peristera
Paschou was elected Chair of the Society for the next
three years. Our sincere thanks to the previous Chair, Hugh
Rickards, for his important contributions in bringing the field forward
during his presidency.
EMTICS proposal funded by FP7 HEALTH
May 10, 2011
this largescale multinational effort, which was funded with 6,000,000
Euros, and is coordinated by Pieter Hoekstra from Groningen University,
Peristera Paschou will be Head of the Genetics Work Package. She will be leading the efforts to elucidate the genetic
background and environmental interactions that lead to the onset of
Peristera Paschou on sabbatical at the National Institutes of
April 10, 2011
Dr. Paschou will hold a position as an Adjunct
Inverstigator at the National Institute for Child Health and
Human Development from April 1 to September 30 2011. Hosted
by the NICHD Director, Dr. Constantine
she will undertake the analysis of data generated by next generation
sequencing technologies, encompassing the whole genome of studied
Transferring our algorithms beyond human genetics. Lewis et al. paper appears in PLoS ONE
April 7, 2011
for the identification of population structure informative markers
through PCA have received considerable attention from the economically
important field of genetics applied on livestock production. In this
PLoS ONE paper, Lewis et al.
show how our methods can be applied on the bovine HapMap genomewide data in order to select ancestry informative markers. These markers
can inform the design of breeding programs and efforts to
conserve biodiversity. Furthermore, the SNPs that we have identified can
provide a reliable solution for the traceability of breed-specific
European clinical guidelines for the diagnosis, assessment
and management of Tourette Syndrome published at ECAP
March 29, 2011
As a result of a multinational collaboration, fostered by the European
Society for the Study of Tourette Syndrome and the COST Action
"European Network for the Study of GTS", this series of four papers
that appeared in the Journal of European Child and Adolescent
Psychiatry, are an important first step towards the standardization and
harmonization of clinical practices for Tourette Syndrome across Europe.
Paschou receives award for best platform presentation at the 61st
Annual Meeting of the Hellenic Society for Biochemistry and Molecular
October 17, 2010