Navigation Links
Pitt research identifies new target in brain for treating schizophrenia
Date:11/5/2008

PITTSBURGH--Research from the University of Pittsburgh could expand the options for controlling schizophrenia by identifying a brain region that responds to more than one type of antipsychotic drug. The findings illustrate for the first time that the orbitofrontal cortex could be a promising target for developing future antipsychotic drugseven those that have very different mechanisms of action. The study will be published during the week of Nov. 3 in the online edition of the journal Proceedings of National Academy of Sciences, with a print version to follow.

Bita Moghaddam, a professor in the Department of Neuroscience in Pitt's School of Arts and Sciences and the paper's lead author, found that schizophrenia-like activity in the orbitofrontal cortexa brain region responsible for cognitive activity such as decision makingcould be triggered by the two different neurotransmitters linked to schizophrenia: dopamine and glutamate. Brain activity was then normalized both by established antipsychotic medications that regulate only dopamine and by experimental treatments that specifically target glutamate.

"The orbitofrontal cortex is an area that's been somewhat neglected in schizophrenia research. This study should encourage researchers to focus on this brain region in imaging and other human studies, and also to use as a model for developing antipsychotic drugs," Moghaddam said. "Schizophrenia appears to be caused by very diverse and sometimes rare genetic mutations. Diverse mutations can end up causing the same disease if they disrupt the function of a common group of neurons or networks of neurons. We think that the key to understanding the pathophysiology of schizophrenia and finding better treatments is to identify these networks. This data suggests that the orbitofrontal cortex may be a critical component in networks affected by schizophrenia."

Working with UPMC neurology resident Houman Homayoun, Moghaddam first established that dopamine and glutamate could, separately, produce schizophrenia-like symptoms in the orbitofrontal cortex. They first simulated symptoms brought on by irregular neural receptors of glutamate. Studies within the last few yearsincluding work by Moghaddam at Yale Universityhave shown that under-functioning glutamate receptors known as NMDA receptors can produce schizophrenia-like symptoms. Moghaddam and Homayoun found that stunting the NMDA receptors resulted in schizophrenia-like effects in the orbitofrontal cortex. The team also used a dose of amphetamine to simulate dopamine-related schizophrenia symptoms in the orbitofrontal cortex; schizophrenia is often linked to an excess of dopamine in the brain.

Moghaddam and Homayoun then tested the currently prescribed medicationa treatment developed more than 50 years ago that targets neural receptors of dopamineand new experimental drugs that work on the glutamate system. They found that both medications normalized brain activity.


'/>"/>

Contact: Morgan Kelly
mekelly@pitt.edu
412-624-4356
University of Pittsburgh
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. Research conference at UH to focus on US troops needs, homeland security
2. Scripps research scientists identify compounds for stem-cell production from adult cells
3. State fund advances titanium powder research, 9 other Iowa State projects
4. Research shows that time invested in practicing pays off for young musicians
5. Trustee makes donation to start new solar energy research center at Rensselaer
6. NJIT seminar set for Nov. 6 to focus on bioelectronics -- emerging research area
7. Corn researchers discover novel gene shut-off mechanisms
8. Researchers at UH explore patient preferences for personalized medicine
9. OSAs ISP launches with research on breathing disorders and congenital heart defects
10. UC Davis researchers discover a key to aggressive breast cancer
11. Bayhill Therapeutics and the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation announce research collaboration
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:11/15/2016)... DUBLIN , Nov 15, 2016 Research ... - Global Forecast to 2021" report to their offering. ... ... reach USD 16.18 Billion by 2021 from USD 6.21 Billion in ... Growth of the bioinformatics market is driven by ...
(Date:6/22/2016)... 2016   Acuant , the leading ... has partnered with RightCrowd ® to ... Management, Self-Service Kiosks and Continuous Workforce Assurance. ... functional enhancements to existing physical access control ... with an automated ID verification and authentication ...
(Date:6/15/2016)... 15, 2016 Transparency Market ... Recognition Market by Application Market - Global Industry Analysis Size ... to the report, the  global gesture recognition market ... and is estimated to grow at a CAGR ... 2024.  Increasing application of gesture recognition ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:12/7/2016)... and ANN ARBOR, Mich. ... held biopharmaceutical company developing breakthrough immune modulatory medicines, announced ... of the Company,s lead therapeutic candidate, LYC-30937- E nteric ... often a debilitating skin disease that is estimated to ... the United States , with approximately 1.5 - ...
(Date:12/7/2016)... ... December 07, 2016 , ... ... solutions for industrial facilities, today announced that one of the nation’s fastest growing ... Cambrian’s novel water-energy purchase agreement (WEPA). Under the WEPA, a first for the ...
(Date:12/7/2016)... ... December 07, 2016 , ... JULABO USA is inviting ... The new website has been designed to provide the best user-friendly experience coupled ... access detailed product information, read educational industry content as well as share information ...
(Date:12/7/2016)... , ... December 07, 2016 , ... Kara Dwyer Dodge grew up hearing stories of ... third-generation fisherman in Scituate, Mass., found a sea turtle entangled in the lines of one ... turtle became a minor sensation because no one could remember ever seeing one so large ...
Breaking Biology Technology: