News

AddToAny

Google+ Facebook Twitter Twitter

An autoimmune cause of schizophrenia?

Researchers from Tokyo Medical and Dental University (TMDU) have identified an autoantibody – a protein that is produced by the immune system to attach to a specific substance from the individual’s own body, rather than to a foreign substance, such as a virus or bacteria – in some patients with schizophrenia.

Notably, they also found that this autoantibody caused schizophrenia-like behaviours and changes in the brain when they injected it into mice.

When considering possible autoantibodies that might cause schizophrenia, the research team had a specific protein in mind.

Previous research has suggested that neural cell adhesion molecule (NCAM1), which helps cells in the brain talk to one another via specialised connections known as synapses, may have a role in the development of schizophrenia.

Lead author of the study, Hiroki Shiwaku, said: “We decided to look for autoantibodies against NCAM1 in around 200 healthy controls and 200 patients with schizophrenia.

“We only found these autoantibodies in 12 patients, suggesting that they may be associated with the disorder in just a small subset of schizophrenia cases.”

bit.ly/3NqgtKk

Image credit | Shutterstock

Related Articles

Antibiotic resistance genes identified in TB

An analysis of more than 10,000 Mycobacterium tuberculosis bacterial isolates from 23 countries has revealed new genes associated with resistance to 13 first- and second-line new and repurposed antibiotics.

A nasal vaccine

Researchers have found the first non-infectious needle-free nasal vaccine to be effective against COVID-19. Senior study co-author Dr Venigalla B Rao explains how it works.

Non-COVID-19 respiratory infections statistics

An increase in the number of non-COVID-19 respiratory infections should be expected this winter, say scientists.

My lab: From flu to Covid to monkeypox

Panagiotis Pantelidis gives a guided tour of Infection and Immunity Sciences at North West London Pathology.

Top