It's a question that has intrigued philosophers for centuries: Do you need a little crazy to be creative? Genetic researchers have now started thinking: what makes someone creative, also can make them crazy.
Artist Vincent Van Gogh produces iconic paintings such as Starry Night. Mathematician John Nash created the revolutionary ideas in economics.
Van Gogh and Nash is considered a genius in his field. Both also suffer from hallucinations and emotional disorders.
Geneticist Kari Stefansson wanted to know the difference between a brilliant brain that is capable of producing extraordinary paintings and amaze us with the truths of mathematics, with a brain the most.
To be a creative person, you should have the ability to think outside the box. And when you leave the box in the morning, you may not be able to get back into the box in the evening, said Stefansson.
So he and his colleagues from deCODE Genetics in Iceland gather information from tens and thousands of actors, musicians, visual artists, and writers from all over Iceland and trace their genes.
The results show many variations of genes that are also found in a person suffering from schizophrenia, although the artists do not suffer from the disease. Stefansson said the comparison is also like a double-edged sword.
As with almost everything in this world, there is a price to be paid for creativity. For some people this is a good thing, for others something bad, Stefansson said.
Stefansson says understanding the association between creativity and mental illness could help health professionals treating schizophrenia to Contain the beast while keeping the beauty.
According to Stefansson ?, understanding of the relationship between creativity and mental illness can assist health professionals in treating patients with schizophrenia? to be able to control the disease while picking her blessing in disguise.
The study is published in the journal Nature Neuroscience.