5 - 11 - 50. Schizophrenia. Nongenetic contributions, Biomarkers, & Animal Models (10-06)

5 - 11 - 50. Schizophrenia. Nongenetic contributions, Biomarkers, & Animal Models (10-06)

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Hi there we're going to talk about several additional topics before we go on to talk about drugs for schizophrenia. So in this lecture we'll discuss non genetic contributions to schizophrenia. We'll discuss biomarkers and we'll discuss animals models for schizophrenia. Why is the maximum concordance for Schizophrenia only 50 percent? What are the non-genetic contributions to Schizophrenia risk? Well, one important characteristic may be nourishment and health of the fetus. Viral infections during pregnancy could affect one fetus and not the other. Though this would not apply to identical twins which shared the same fetal environment, possibly leading to low-level inflammation. My colleague Professor Paul Patterson at Caltech studies this and there are good historical examples mostly from words of now nourished population. And a few months later the rate of schizophrenia, among children, later measured as adults was greater than under normal populations. So low level inflammation possibly interacting with schizophrenia susceptibility genes is a factor that must be considered. Another factor is head injury. A friend who is a psychiatrist has taken me on his interviews with schizophrenic patients and he always asked, have you recently had a head injury before you started to display the schizophrenic symptoms A sudden or traumatic head injury has been known to precipitate schizophrenia, again possibly in association with schizophrenia susceptible genes. And then we will very briefly say that for some diseases, especially bipolar diseases A small dose of susceptibility genes may confer a selective advantage in bipolar disease by making a person livelier, more fascinating, etc. There is no known heterozygote advantage associated with schizophrenia. Biomarkers are important
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