The following is a recent discussion by two schizophrenia researchers that DJ Jaffe has forwarded (and which originally took place in the Schizoph email discussion list). I think its worth while to read simply to provoke some additional though on the subject. Brian.

--------------- (P. Dalen) and (M. Miller) raise a very interesting point which was being discussed on the Schizoph news group. Here's how it went:

>Schizophrenia isn't easy to understand either. It's practically defined as the collection of psychotic disorders that we don't understand.

I agree completely with your definition. But 99% of all research on schizophrenia is designed on the opposite assumption, that sz is a *more or less* homogeneous disease. Look at the *design*, not just at the introductory phrases in the grant proposal or research paper. You will find that the authors often contradict themselves, but it is the design that counts, isn't it?

>I don't think you're alone. Everyone wants to split schizophrenia. The >question is, how will we do it? Tell us what to do.

I wish you were right. However, I have an infallible solution that will lead to significant breakthroughs in just a few years if properly implemented! The problem is that my solution is utterly unwelcome to the present research establishment.

It is very simple. Just stop funding any *new* research projects that are not *designed* to reveal natural splits in the collection of disorders called schizophrenia. This is in effect a reversal of the present situation, in which such projects are being weeded out almost completely. Everybody knows that there is no premium on "splitting". There hasn't been for the last 60+ years, so this would be a major change, with losers who would fight against it with all their might. But I repeat, it is very simple, and the theoretical problems are simple too. If the money starts going to the splitters instead of the lumpers, brilliant ideas will be mushrooming out of previously barren ground. ---

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