SURVIVE - Let the dead help the living

The mentally ill comprise a vulnerable group with a markedly increased risk of disease and premature death. People with schizophrenia die 20-25 years younger than non-schizophrenics, for example.

Our starting point is that the dead have a story to tell. We can uncover their story through autopsy, enabling meaningful research into the causes of increased morbidity among the mentally ill.

The project will increase our knowledge of the impact of obesity, lifestyle and medication, and identify the major genetic risk markers for mental illness. We hope  to expand the project with material from the autopsies of non-sufferers; this will greatly increase the research potential.

The project is the work of the three Danish departments of forensic medicine and a wide range of external health care partners.