SCHIZOPHRENIA... AN INTRODUCTION

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Hi bloggers

I think everyone is busy with their exams..

I wish all the very best to one and all and here comes my first blog of the month and good to see that our team names have been updated...


SchizophreniA.. LETS GO THROUGH IT BRIEFLY..


The drugs which are used to treat all kinds of psychosis mainly schizophrenia are antipsychotic drugs.

These drugs are generally dopamine antagonists and also acts as the antagonists for the 5-HT receptors.

Schizophrenia is a mental disorder characterized by the patient with hallucinations, thinking that he is not important, and other ideas which are not true.

CAUSES OF SCHIZOPHRENIA:

Genetic and environmental factors:

Schizophrenia occurs because of the genetic and
environmental factors.

There will be 10% of chance in coming for the first-degree relatives where in the case of monozygotic twins, if one is affected, the other has 50% chances in getting the disease. The number of genes that are responsible for the disease has been iscovered but no gene has full affect.

Environmental factors also play a key role in the development of schizophrenia. Maternal viral infections mainly cause schizophrenia. During the early period of the prenatal life, a
neurodegenerative disorder mainly affecting the cerebral cortex and causes the cortical atrophy and cerebral ventricles get enlarged. Displaced neurons are found in the schizophrenia patients in their post-mortum report.

Hence because of all these factors the schizophrenia will occur.

Neurochemical theories:

This is interesting. Here the concept was proposed going in the reverse direction. The drugs which are showing their affect on schizophrenia patients are considered as the basis for the disease characterization.

Dopamine theory:

Proposed by: Carlson

Amphetamine causes a syndrome which is very similar to the schizophrenia and is because of the release of the dopamine. Even in causes the increase in symptoms incase of schizophrenia patients. Dopamine release in case of animals causes the behavior which commonly occurs in case of schizophrenia patients. And agonist for the D2-receptors which are powerful like apomorphine
and bromocriptine causes the same kind of effects. Use of the dopamine antagonists and drugs like reserpine decreases the symptoms of schizophrenia and decreases the abnormal conditions that are caused because of the amphetamine administration.

Glutamate theory:

Phencyclidine, ketamine and izocipline are the N-methy D-aspartate antagonists and reduce the glutamate concentration and the number of glutamate receptors and produce hallucinations etc.

Other theories:

5-HT and nordrenaline is also involved in schizophrenia. If the 5-HT does not work properly, it causes schizophrenia.

But the drugs which antagonize the dopamine receptors also antagonize 5-Ht receptors and hence both the theories will not match.

There will be less undesirable effects with the use of atypical antipsychotics.

Reference:

Rang and Dales Pharmacology by Rang, Dale, ritter, moore, churchill livingstone publishers, 6th edition, page no 545 to 555

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Author: Siva Mavuduru

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