Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Immaturity Of The Brain May Cause Schizophrenia

Date:
September 11, 2008
Source:
BioMed Central Limited
Summary:
The underdevelopment of a specific region in the brain may lead to schizophrenia in individuals. According to research published today in BioMed Central's open access journal Molecular Brain, dentate gyrus, which is located in the hippocampus in the brain and thought to be responsible for working memory and mood regulation, remained immature in an animal model of schizophrenia.

The immaturity of the dentate gyrus -- located in the hippocampus of the brain -- may be an underlying cause for schizophrenia.
Credit: iStockphoto/Vasiliy Yakobchuk

The underdevelopment of a specific region in the brain may lead to schizophrenia in individuals. According to research published today in BioMed Central’s open access journal Molecular Brain, dentate gyrus, which is located in the hippocampus in the brain and thought to be responsible for working memory and mood regulation, remained immature in an animal model of schizophrenia.

Professor Tsuyoshi Miyakawa of Fujita Health University, National Institute for Physiological Sciences (NIPS), and Kyoto University led a research team in Japan, with support from the CREST program of Japan Science and Technology Agency (JST).

First, the team investigated behaviors by conducting a systematic and well-defined behavioral test battery with alpha-CaMKII mutant mice, an animal model of schizophrenia. These mice showed abnormal behaviors similar to those of schizophrenic patients.

Next, the team found the dentate gyrus neurons in hippocampus of the brain of these mice were not matured morphologically and physiologically. By a gene expression analysis, changes of gene expression related to the maturation of dentate gyrus neurons were also found in the brains of schizophrenic patients.

Taken together, the immaturity of the dentate gyrus may be an underlying cause for schizophrenia.

Among their findings, mice heterozygous for a null mutation of the alpha-isoform of calcium/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase II show profoundly dysregulated behaviors, including a severe working memory deficit and an exaggerated infradian rhythm (cycle of increases and decreases in locomotor activity in their home cage; 2-3 weeks/cycle), which are comparable to the symptoms observed in patients with schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and other psychiatric disorders.

Despite extensive research, the brain mechanisms of schizophrenia remain largely unknown. According to Professor Miyakawa, one reason for this is that clinical diagnosis in the area of psychiatry is based solely on subjective observations and not on biologically or objectively solid criteria, "As a result of this limitation, most of the psychiatric disorders currently diagnosed as a single disorder are likely to comprise several biologically distinct heterogeneous populations. Therefore, the identification and investigation of more reliable biomarkers that characterize a single subpopulation of a specific psychiatric disorder are essential for increasing the understanding of the pathogenesis/pathophysiology of such disorders."

The authors note that, "'Immature dentate gyrus' could provide a basis for such biomarkers that may help produce new diagnosis and treatment for schizophrenia patients".


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by BioMed Central Limited. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Nobuyuki Yamasaki, Motoko Maekawa, Katsunori Kobayashi, Yasushi Kajii, Jun Maeda, Miho Soma, Keizo Takao, Koichi Tanda, Koji Ohira, Keiko Toyama, Kouji Kanzaki, Kohji Fukunaga, Yusuke Sudo, Hiroshi Ichinose, Masashi Ikeda, Nakao Iwata, Norio Ozaki, Hidenori Suzuki, Makoto Higuchi, Tetsuya Suhara, Shigeki Yuasa, Tsuyoshi Miyakawa. Alpha-CaMKII deficiency causes immature dentate gyrus, a novel candidate endophenotype of psychiatric disorders. Molecular Brain, 2008, 1:6 (10 September 2008) [link]

Cite This Page:

BioMed Central Limited. "Immaturity Of The Brain May Cause Schizophrenia." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 11 September 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/09/080910133341.htm>.
BioMed Central Limited. (2008, September 11). Immaturity Of The Brain May Cause Schizophrenia. ScienceDaily. Retrieved August 1, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/09/080910133341.htm
BioMed Central Limited. "Immaturity Of The Brain May Cause Schizophrenia." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/09/080910133341.htm (accessed August 1, 2014).

Share This




More Mind & Brain News

Friday, August 1, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Google (Kind Of) Complies With 'Right To Be Forgotten Law'

Google (Kind Of) Complies With 'Right To Be Forgotten Law'

Newsy (July 31, 2014) Google says it is following Europe's new "Right To Be Forgotten Law," which eliminates user information upon request, but only to a certain degree. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Stroke Signs: Three Hour Deadline

Stroke Signs: Three Hour Deadline

Ivanhoe (July 31, 2014) Sometimes the signs of a stroke are far from easy to recognize. Learn from one young father’s story on the signs of a stroke. Video provided by Ivanhoe
Powered by NewsLook.com
Grain Brain May Be Harming Us

Grain Brain May Be Harming Us

Ivanhoe (July 31, 2014) Could eating carbohydrates be harmful to our brain health? Find out what one neurologist says about changing our diets. Video provided by Ivanhoe
Powered by NewsLook.com
Playground Tales: Learning to Socialize With Autism

Playground Tales: Learning to Socialize With Autism

Ivanhoe (July 31, 2014) Playgrounds are typically great places where kids can have fun while learning how to interact with other kids, but for some kids with autism, they can have the reverse effect. Hear how researchers are trying to change that. Video provided by Ivanhoe
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins