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Marco A. Grados, M.D., MPH
Kennedy Krieger Institute
707 N. Broadway
Baltimore, MD 21205
Dr. Marco Grados is a research scientist at the Kennedy Krieger Institute. He is also an assistant professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine.
After completing his undergraduate and medical training in Lima, Peru, Dr. Grados came to Detroit for an internship in internal medicine and a residency in psychiatry at the Henry Ford Health Systems. He came to Baltimore in 1994 as child psychiatry fellow, chief resident in child psychiatry at Johns Hopkins and psychiatry faculty at Kennedy Krieger Institute. Dr. Grados also obtained a master's of public health (M.P.H.) in genetic epidemiology from the Johns Hopkins School of Public Health. After six years as medical director of outpatient programs in the Institute's Department of Psychiatry, overseeing the outpatient care of child psychiatry outpatients, Dr. Grados is now dedicated to genetic epidemiology research in obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) and related disorders. He obtained a five-year Research Career Development Award from the National Institute of Mental Health (2002-2007) to study the genetics of OCD in children.
Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) is the fourth most common psychiatric disorder, affecting two to three percent of children and adolescents. It consists of intrusive ideas that are distressing and persistent (obsessions), or fixed behaviors that are compulsory in nature (compulsions). Examples are excessive handwashing, checking, perfectionism, touching, counting or hoarding. Dr. Grados has conducted a family study of OCD with child probands with the goal of locating susceptibility genes for OCD. As part of the the OCD Genetics Consortium (OCGS) based at Hopkins and the Tourette Syndrome Association International Genetics Consortium (TSA-IGC), Dr. Grados continues to investigate the genetic basis of OCD and Tourette syndrome (motor and vocal tics). With support from the Obsessive-Compulsive Foundation (OCF), Dr. Grados also studies the subtype of "autoimmune OCD" collecting serum to test for cytokine network abnormalities (markers of inflammation) in children with OCD and Tourette syndrome. Dr. Grados also conducts research in a genetic syndrome, Cornelia de Lange syndrome (CdLS), with support from the CdLS-USA Foundation. CdLS provides a research model to better understand autism and obsessive-compulsive traits (repetitive behaviors) starting from a known gene mechanism.