Inflammation and Oxidative Stress Shed Insight to Mysteries of Schizophrenia

Thursday, October 6, 2016 Mental Health News J E 4

BALTIMORE, Oct. 6, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- JOHNS HOPKINS -- Schizophrenia is a devastating mental illness consisting of delusions, hallucinations or disorganized thoughts, afflicting about 1% of the population with onset typically in late adolescence.  The causes of schizophrenia are still not well understood, and for the past 50 years the main medical treatment for schizophrenia has remained antipsychotic medication.  But an increasing number of studies find abnormalities in inflammation and oxidation in affected individuals.   

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An international group of scientists have summed up this emerging field in a new special issue of Schizophrenia Research highlighting the wide ramifications of these discoveries.  The authors underscore how oxidative stress and inflammation may disturb brain development and neurotransmission and contribute to the risk of schizophrenia.  The clues have been identified in individuals with schizophrenia using analyses of cerebrospinal fluid, blood, genetics, brain imaging and brain autopsy specimens.  While risk of schizophrenia has been tied to a variety of factors, including genetics, brain injury, drug use, and prenatal infections, the emerging insights on inflammatory alterations may be a common thread that ties many of these together and suggest new treatments for this pernicious malady. Investigators involved in the work are from Johns Hopkins University, Sheppard Pratt, the University of Pennsylvania, University of Lausanne (Switzerland), and University of Cambridge (UK).

For further inquiries or press copies of articles, contact Akira Sawa MD, PhD, and Thomas Sedlak MD, PhD, at 1-410-635-1422, or Email

Link to the full issue:

To view the original version on PR Newswire, visit:

SOURCE Schizophrenia Center, Johns Hopkins



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