Pharmacopsychiatry 2013; 46(S 01): S2-S9
DOI: 10.1055/s-0033-1341481
Original Paper
© Georg Thieme Verlag KG Stuttgart · New York

Perspectives of a Systems Biology of the Brain: The Big Data Conundrum Understanding Psychiatric Diseases

H. W. Mewes
1  Inst. f. Bioinformatics and Systems Biology, Helmholtz Zentrum München; Technische Universität München, Wissenschaftszentrum Weihenstephan, Neuherberg, Germany
› Author Affiliations
Further Information

Publication History

Publication Date:
18 April 2013 (online)


Psychiatric diseases provoke human tragedies. Asocial behaviour, mood imbalance, uncontrolled affect, and cognitive malfunction are the price for the biological and social complexity of neurobiology. To understand the etiology and to influence the onset and progress of mental diseases remains of upmost importance, but despite the much improved care for the patients, more then 100 years of research have not succeeded to understand the basic disease mechanisms and enabling rationale treatment. With the advent of the genome based technologies, much hope has been created to join the various dimension of -omics data to uncover the secrets of mental illness. Big Data as generated by -omics do not come with explanations. In this essay, I will discuss the inherent, not well understood methodological foundations and problems that seriously obstacle in striving for a quick success and may render lucky strikes impossible.