Universiteit Leiden

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Research project


Aggression inflicts a huge personal, psychological and financial burden on affected individuals, their relatives, and society at large. Despite large scientific, preventive, and treatment investments, no decrease in aggressive behaviour is seen. By combining interdisciplinary expertise the ACTION consortium will inform the development of novel diagnostic tools and causative targets and guide the development of treatment and prevention strategies.

2014 - 2019
Thomas Hankemeier

ACTION combines data from

  • clinical epidemiology
  • genetic epidemiology
  • gene-environment correlation and interaction;
  • biomarkers and metabolomics.

ACTION will provide guidance in optimising current intervention programs and deliver new biological targets to pave the way for novel therapeutic interventions. ACTION will provide a decision tree to guide personalised intervention programmes and will have direct and sustained impact on reducing paediatric aggression. Its overarching aim is to reduce aggression by developing approaches that take individual differences in genetic and environmental susceptibility into account, thereby leading to better understanding of personalised intervention programs.

Leiden’s Role in this consortium

  • to investigate the metabolomic profile (in urine samples) of aggressive behaviour to validate and establish existing and new biomarkers to aid the classification of individuals into different sub-diagnostic categories
  • to explore the causal relationships between the suggested biomarkers


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