Professor van den Bree's research examines the developmental pathways of mental health. Her work focuses on the genetic and environmental factors that increase or decrease risk of the development of mental health problems in children and adolescents and the characterization of the underlying process.
She is interested in the manifestations associated with small chromosomal deletions and duplications. In addition to Velo-Cardio-Facial Syndrome (VCFS), which is also known as 22q11.2 Deletion Syndrome (22q11.2DS), her research also focuses on deletions and duplications in a number of other chromosomal regions.
Other research interests are the development of substance misuse in young people and factors contributing to, or exacerbating, risk of homelessness.
She also leads the effort to establish the impact on wider society of research conducted within her Institute of Psychological Medicine and Clinical Neurosciences at Cardiff University.