About My Health Careers Internship MedBlogs Contact us
Medindia LOGIN REGISTER
Advertisement

Schizophrenia Can Be Sniffed Out By New Method

by Rukmani Krishna on May 4, 2013 at 11:44 PM
Font : A-A+

 Schizophrenia Can Be Sniffed Out By New Method

According to a TAU researcher, neurons in the nose could be the key to early, fast, and accurate diagnosis of the debilitating mental illness, schizophrenia.

Because physiological evidence confirming the disease can only be gathered from the brain during an autopsy, mental health professionals have had to rely on a battery of psychological evaluations to diagnose their patients.

Advertisement

Now, Dr. Noam Shomron and Prof. Ruth Navon of Tel Aviv University's Sackler Faculty of Medicine, together with PhD student Eyal Mor from Dr. Shomron's lab and Prof. Akira Sawa of Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore, Maryland, have discovered a method for physical diagnosis - by collecting tissue from the nose through a simple biopsy.

Surprisingly, collecting and sequencing neurons from the nose may lead to "more sure-fire" diagnostic capabilities than ever before, Dr. Shomron said.
Advertisement

This finding could not only lead to a more accurate diagnosis, it may also permit the crucial, early detection of the disease, giving rise to vastly improved treatment overall.

Until now, biomarkers for schizophrenia had only been found in the neuron cells of the brain, which can't be collected before death. By that point it's obviously too late to do the patient any good, said Dr. Shomron.

Instead, psychiatrists depend on psychological evaluations for diagnosis, including interviews with the patient and reports by family and friends.

For a solution to this diagnostic dilemma, the researchers turned to the olfactory system, which includes neurons located on the upper part of the inner nose. Researchers at Johns Hopkins University collected samples of olfactory neurons from patients diagnosed with schizophrenia and a control group of non-affected individuals, then sent them to Dr. Shomron's TAU lab.

Dr. Shomron and his fellow researchers applied a high-throughput technology to these samples, studying the microRNA of the olfactory neurons. Within these molecules, which help to regulate our genetic code, they were able to identify a microRNA, which is highly elevated in those with schizophrenia, compared to individuals who do not have the disease.

Further research revealed that this particular microRNA controls genes associated with the generation of neurons.

In practice, material for biopsy could be collected through a quick and easy outpatient procedure, using a local anesthetic, said Dr. Shomron. And with microRNA profiling results ready in a matter of hours, this method could evolve into a relatively simple and accurate test to diagnose a very complicated illness.

Though there is much more to investigate, Dr. Shomron has high hopes for this diagnostic method.

This finding was reported in the journal Neurobiology of Disease.

Source: ANI
Advertisement

Advertisement
News A-Z
A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z
News Category
What's New on Medindia
Contraceptive Pills in Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) Curtail Type 2 Diabetes Risk
Mushroom May Help Cut Down the Odds of Developing Depression
How to Battle Boredom during COVID
View all

Medindia Newsletters Subscribe to our Free Newsletters!
Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy.

More News on:
Schizophrenia Mental Health - Neurosis vs Psychosis Schizoaffective Disorder Mind-wandering Paranoia Anosognosia Antipsychotic Medications 

Recommended Reading
Schizophrenia
Schizophrenia is a mental disorder characterized by symptoms of thought, behavior and social ......
Anosognosia
Anosognosia is the lack of awareness or insight in a patient to understand that he/she has a disease...
Antipsychotic Medications
Antipsychotics are the class of drugs which help in treating mental disorders like schizophrenia, bi...
Mental Health - Neurosis vs Psychosis
Mental well-being is a concern and abnormal coping of emotions can lead to neurosis or psychosis. Me...
Mind-wandering
Mind wandering is a spontaneous and unintentional shifting of attention of thoughts from a primary t...
Paranoia
Paranoia is a false belief where the individual feels unfairly targeted or persecuted by everyone el...
Schizoaffective Disorder
Schizoaffective disorder is a serious mental disorder in which the individual reflects symptoms that...

Disclaimer - All information and content on this site are for information and educational purposes only. The information should not be used for either diagnosis or treatment or both for any health related problem or disease. Always seek the advice of a qualified physician for medical diagnosis and treatment. Full Disclaimer

© All Rights Reserved 1997 - 2021

This site uses cookies to deliver our services. By using our site, you acknowledge that you have read and understand our Cookie Policy, Privacy Policy, and our Terms of Use