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Martin Alda, MD, FRCPC




Department of Psychiatry, Dalhousie University
Staff Psychiatrist, Capital District Health Authority
Killam Chair in Mood Disorders
Room 3088, Abbie J. Lane Memorial Building
Phone: (902) 473-2712
Fax: (902) 473-4877
E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


The focus of Dr. Alda’s group is on major psychiatric disorders and their genetics. Bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, and depression are all highly heritable, affect young people, and can be more or less successfully treated. His research focuses on mapping genes for these conditions, linking the genetic basis with treatment response, and examining how the genetic risk translates into behavioural and clinical features of the illness. Dr. Alda uses clinical, molecular-genetic, biochemical, brain-imaging, and neuropsychological methods in studies of patients and their family members. He also co-founded an international consortium to investigate the genetic basis of lithium's effect on bipolar patients.

Recently his group completed a series of studies suggesting that subjects at genetic risk for bipolar disorder and those early in their illness show no structural or functional brain changes. This contrasts with specific deficits in those with prolonged illness.

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