June 25, 2006

Infections as a causal factor in schizophrenia

A new article in Psychiatric Times (a news publication for psychiatrists and psychologists) covers the new research around infections as one of the causal factors in schizophrenia (and bipolar disorder). Its a very technical article - so its probably of most value if you're well versed in science.

New research in the field continues, aided increasingly by impressive technologic advances in microbiology and virology. As recently as the past decade, reports documented the presence of influenza virus, rubella virus, bovine disease virus, and other infectious agents in patients with schizophrenia and bipolar disorder, as well as the presence of other infectious agents in childhood pediatric autoimmune neuropsychiatric disorder associated with streptococcal infections (PANDAS) and obsessive-compulsive disorder.

In this article, we briefly highlight the background of such research; discuss our own research on Toxoplasma gondii, herpes simplex virus (HSV), Cytomegalovirus (CMV), and endogenous retroviruses; and consider the future implications of such research for psychiatric clinicians.

Read the full article: Infectious Agents in Schizophrenia and Bipolar Disorder


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