March 31, 2007

Treatment of Acute Episodes of Schizophrenia

An acute episode of schizophrenia is characterized by having active psychosis along with a worsening of other symptoms, such as mood problems, cognitive impairments, and negative symptoms. An acute episode can wreak havoc on a person's life, being damaging to to relationships, job, and personal living, and usually necessitates hospitalization. According to Dr. Michael D. Jibson, MD, PhD writing in Psychiatric Times, much of the deterioration of ability to live independently and hold a job, seen in chronic schizophrenia, occurs during acute episodes. Dr. Jibson discusses the goals of, and pharmacotherapy (medication) options for, treatment of episodes of acute schizophrenia. Read More...
Posted by Jeanie Wolfson at 01:45 PM | Comments (3)

March 30, 2007

Understanding Where the Brain Goes Wrong in Schizophrenia

Dr. Robert Freedman, M.D., in the American Journal of Psychiatry, discusses recent findings from different studies of the brains of patients living with the sensory processing problems and auditory hallucinations of schizophrenia. The studies used techniques such as EEG, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). Some salient points were made regarding several topics of inquiry. Information Processing: Many people with schizophrenia are unusually aware of stimuli (sound, sight, smell, etc) in their surroundings. Patients have problems discriminating important from unimportant information they recieve from their environment both because of an inability to select what they respond Read More...
Posted by Jeanie Wolfson at 05:20 AM | Comments (0)

March 29, 2007

"Patch" System Coming to Schizophrenia Medications

A company called Dermatrends has announced this week that it will develop a prototype skin patch formulation of a widely used drug to treat schizophrenia and bipolar mania. Dermatrends, Inc., a drug delivery company, said that it has entered into an agreement with Teikoku Pharma USA to develop a prototype patch formulation for the transdermal delivery of a widely used anti-psychotic pharmaceutical compound. Under terms of the agreement, Dermatrends will be providing the drug delivery technology for transdermal delivery of an anti-psychotic drug that was selected by Teikoku. Dermatrends will utilize its standardized developmental process for effective transdermal delivery. While Read More...
Posted by szadmin at 12:00 PM | Comments (0)

Family and Cognitive Interventions for Schizophrenia

Although "intensive psychodynamic therapy" (such as psychoanalytic talk therapy) for the treatment of psychosis in schizophrenia has been found to be ineffective if not outright harmful, other verbal and social interventions, when used in conjunction with medications, may help reduce relapse rates and improve social functioning. These other therapies are not "psychotherapies" as that term is usually understood, and include:Family intervention Cognitive-behavioral therapy specifically for psychosis Social skills training Cognitive remediation (aimed at improving memory and attention) An article in Psychiatric Times discusses two of these therapies in detail, saying that neither is widely available and both are time and Read More...
Posted by Jeanie Wolfson at 11:55 AM | Comments (0)

Lieber Family Funds $9.2 Million Expansion in Schizophrenia Research at Columbia U.

Every once in a rare period a person or family gets deeply involved in a humanitarian cause and truly pushes the boundaries forward for research and treatments that would otherwise have not happened; and thereby making a vast difference in the lives of what could ultimately be millions of people. Such is the case with the Lieber family, who this week gave $9.2 million to Columbia University or expansion of the Lieber Center for Schizophrenia Research. The Lieber family is also a key sponsor, and manager, of NARSAD - the leading non-profit schizophrenia research foundation. Following is the text from Read More...
Posted by szadmin at 07:45 AM | Comments (1)

Research Identifies Possible Genetic Trigger for Schizophrenia

Read more... Schizophrenia Biology
A recently-completed study led by scientists from the University of North Carolina may have identified a molecular mechanism involved in the development of schizophrenia. Following is a scientific description of what went on in the study for those people who have the interest and aptitude for this type of biology of schizophrenia research. In studying the postmortem brain tissue of adults who had been diagnosed with schizophrenia, the researchers found that levels of certain gene-regulating molecules called microRNAs were lower among schizophrenia patients than in persons who were free of psychiatric illness. "In many genetic diseases, such as Huntington's disease Read More...
Posted by szadmin at 07:36 AM | Comments (1)

March 27, 2007

Birth Order's Effect on Schizophrenia Severity Studied

Researchers studied families in which siblings had schizophrenia or schizoaffective disorder. They found that the younger sibling, i.e. the one born later, was more likely to have a more severe form of schizophrenia than the older sibling. According to Psychiatry Source, the siblings seemed to function socially and occupationally (at work) at about the same levels before becoming ill. However, the younger sibling was more likely to have the onset of schizophrenia at an earlier age (1.5 years earlier). Also, although birth order did not affect the severity of the worst episode, the later born sibling was less likely to Read More...
Posted by Jeanie Wolfson at 06:30 AM | Comments (0)

March 25, 2007

Using Biological Markers in the Early Diagnosis and Treatment of Schizophrenia

There is an informative discussion in Psychiatric Times by medical doctors Saran, Phanksalkar, and Kablinger, compiling recent research from a multitude of sources, summarizing where research now stands on being able to identify the earliest stage (prodrome) of schizophrenia using "biological markers" in order to possibly treat the disease earlier and therefore have a better outcome. The authors say that: The goal is to use biological markers to determine who is at risk for schizophrenia, to prevent the onset of schizophrenia in persons with prodromal symptoms, and, via early diagnosis and intervention, to reduce the severity of the illness in Read More...
Posted by Jeanie Wolfson at 01:00 PM | Comments (1)

March 24, 2007

Cannabis Use / Schizophrenia Correlation Being Studied

Researchers are studying historic trends in cannabis (marijuana) use in the United Kingdom, matching them to new cases of schizophrenia. If, as a significant amount of evidence shows, cannabis use contributes to the risk, or triggers schizophrenia in vulnerable individuals, then very soon, it will be accounting for 10% of all new cases of schizophrenia in Wales and Britain, with increases in schizophrenia starting earlier among young men in particular. Researchers, in their published article in Addiction Journal, say that exposure to cannabis quadrupled in the 30 years prior to 2002. Its use in children under 18 grew 18-fold. Some Read More...
Posted by Jeanie Wolfson at 08:35 AM | Comments (4)

March 23, 2007

Mothers with Schizophrenia; Their Babies Need Additional Help

When a mother has schizophrenia, there is a greater risk for a poorer relationship between her and her infant - and that poor relationship is linked to greater mental health problems for the child later in life. A study in the Cambridge Journals of Psychological Medicine showed that mothers with schizophrenia and their infants are more likely to have poorer interactions with each other than the mothers with affective disorders and their infants. The mothers with schizophrenia showed less maternal sensitivity and responsiveness with their babies, while their babies, in turn, exhibited more avoidance behavior - showing less engagement with Read More...
Posted by Jeanie Wolfson at 07:50 AM | Comments (0)

March 22, 2007

States Turn to Pharma to Help Lower Drug Costs

Today's New York Times has an interesting article on the struggle that the states are having to lower their drug costs for medicaid programs. It notes that "Many states, looking to rein in the cost of expensive antipsychotic drugs like Zyprexa, have turned to an unusual ally for help - the very company that sells the drug. At more than $300 for a monthly prescription, Zyprexa, which is used to treat schizophrenia and bipolar disorder, is the single biggest drug cost for state Medicaid budgets." However, some experts in the field are wondering why these states let Lilly help oversee Read More...
Posted by szadmin at 07:45 PM | Comments (1)

March 21, 2007

FDA Warns About ADHD Medication Connection to Psychosis and Cardiovascular Events

Stimulant medications commonly used for ADHD may carry a slight increased risk (1 per 1,000) of triggering some of the same psychiatric symptoms as those seen in schizophrenia and mood disorders, even in patients who did not have previous psychiatric problems. These psychiatric symptoms include hearing voices, paranoia (becoming suspicious for no reason) and mania. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has issued an order that all drugs approved for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) carry patient medication guides (handouts) with FDA-approved information informing patients about the potential for cardiovascular risks and adverse psychiatric symptoms from taking the medication. Read More...
Posted by Jeanie Wolfson at 02:05 PM | Comments (5)

Weight Gain Now Most Significant Issue With Antipsychotic Medications

New research that was presented at the 15th European Congress of Psychiatry, held this week in Madrid, Spain, confirmed what many families already know - that the impact of weight gain and metabolic disorders such as diabetes (which are common side effects of many of today's medications) now tops the list as the most challenging side-effect of antipsychotic medications, according to 84% of European psychiatrists surveyed. The European Physical Health in Schizophrenia Survey response results are based on approximately 4,220 responses have been from psychiatrists from about 14 countries. The survey suggested that 87% of the participating psychiatrists rated physical Read More...
Posted by szadmin at 09:20 AM | Comments (1)

St. Louis Medical School Recruiting Siblings of Schizophrenia Patients For Study

Investigators at the Silvio Conte Center for the Neuroscience of Mental Disorders at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis are recruiting schizophrenia patients and their siblings for a study to determine whether subtle differences in brain structure can predict who is at risk for developing the illness. In a study funded by the National Institute of Mental Health, the researchers take MRI scans of the brain and convert those images into three-dimensional models of brain geometry. Called high dimensional brain mapping (HDBM) the technique allows the scientists to detect small differences in brain anatomy that may help predict Read More...
Posted by szadmin at 09:16 AM | Comments (1)

UK Charity Pushes for National Cannabis / Marijuana Education on Link to Schizophrenia

The UK mental health advocacy organization RETHINK (roughly equivalent to NAMI in the US, and Schizophrenia Society in Canada) stepped up the pressure this week for a national education program on the link between cannabis / marijuana use and increased risk of schizophrenia. At we think that such education efforts are important, but that they should be expanded to all the key factors that have been linked to increased schizophrenia risk - especially prenatal care, and child development (see schizophrenia prevention for more information). The mental health charity Rethink stated that at least five international studies have found cannabis Read More...
Posted by szadmin at 08:26 AM | Comments (8)

European Federation Calls For More Schizophrenia Health Care and Social Programs

The European Federation of Associations of Families of People with Mental Illness (EUFAMI) has today called for a more holistic approach to the management of schizophrenia in the form of good health care and social programs, as well as basic human rights for people suffering from this chronic and disabling mental illness which up until now have largely been overlooked. Inger Nilsson, President of EUFAMI explains, "While medication has an important role to play in the management of schizophrenia, it is not the only support system which a person with the illness requires. Locally available, effective and reliable social services Read More...
Posted by szadmin at 07:34 AM | Comments (0)

March 20, 2007

Schizophrenia Prevention - Tactics for Individuals and Families

Schizophrenia causes and the potential for prevention has been the focus of an increasing amount of research during the past few decades. The research is still progressing in this area but when a member of the staff at became pregnant recently we decided to take a closer look at the research with the goal of more clearly identifying some potential actions that a person or family could take that might lower the risk of a child developing schizophrenia or other mental illnesses. We've contacted a half dozen leading schizophrenia researchers at universities around the world who have a great Read More...
Posted by szadmin at 03:40 PM | Comments (1)

ACADIA Has Positive Results From ACP-103 Phase II Schizophrenia Co-Therapy Trial

ACADIA Pharmaceuticals Inc. announced (in a marketing/press release) that it had gotten positive results from a new drug they are temporarily identifying as "ACP-103" that has just completed a Phase II schizophrenia co-therapy trial. The trial evaluated ACP-103 co-therapy when used together with either risperidone, a commonly prescribed atypical antipsychotic drug, or haloperidol, a generic typical antipsychotic drug. The co-therapy arms with ACP-103 demonstrated statistically significant antipsychotic efficacy as measured by the reduction in the Positive and Negative Syndrome Scale (PANSS), the primary endpoint of the trial. In addition, the co-therapy arm combining ACP-103 with low-dose risperidone demonstrated a statistically Read More...
Posted by szadmin at 10:13 AM | Comments (0)

Researchers Identify Risk Gene for Schizophrenia and Immune System (PAR1)

A team of schizophrenia scientists in New York State has scanned the entire human genome for evidence of genes that play a role in schizophrenia and has discovered an strongly associated spot near two genes that regulate the immune system. Psychiatric researchers at The Zucker Hillside Hospital campus of The Feinstein Institute for Medical Research have uncovered evidence of a new gene that appears to increase the risk of developing schizophrenia. The Newsday newspaper talked to leaders in the research field: "It's interesting work," said Dr. Robert Yolken, a professor of pediatrics and director of the Stanley Neurovirology Laboratory at Read More...
Posted by szadmin at 10:08 AM | Comments (1)

March 19, 2007

What it's Like to Have Schizophrenia

We've talked in the past with Dr. Peter Yellowlees at the University of California, Davis and think that he and his team are doing an excellent job of creating new tools that allow people to better understand the experience of having schizophrenia. (Note: he's seeking funding, so if any groups like NAMI are interested in donating money for his research and educational efforts please contact him). Today the BBC news reports on Dr. Yellowlees efforts: Using the experiences of people with the condition, Dr Peter Yellowlees, professor of psychiatry at the University of California, Davis, has harnessed the popular simulation Read More...
Posted by szadmin at 11:25 AM | Comments (1)

Proposals for Mental Health Insurance Parity Debated

The issue of mental health care insurance parity continues today with two bills under discussion in the House. The New York Times discusses these bills in today's issue, with the following commentary: Both bills seek to end discrimination against people with mental disorders by requiring insurers and employers to provide equivalent coverage, or parity, for mental and physical illnesses. That would be a huge change. For decades, insurers have charged higher co-payments and set stricter limits on coverage of mental health services. For example, insurers often refuse to cover more than 20 visits a year to a psychotherapist. And a Read More...
Posted by szadmin at 11:20 AM | Comments (0)

Acadia Pharma Talks about its New Schizophrenia Medications in Development

The following information may be of interest to families because it describes some new medications that are being developed for the treatment of schizophrenia. These new medications provide a hope that better treatments will eventually be available for people who have schizophrenia. Acadia Pharmaceuticals, Inc. recently held their quarterly earnings conference call for investors, and discussed their efforts in development of new drugs that are targeted at treating schizophrenia. Following are some short excerpts from the transcript of this call. Keep in mind that this presentation is, in effect, a means to market the company to investors - and is Read More...
Posted by szadmin at 09:33 AM | Comments (0)

Schizophrenia Prevalence and Severity May Not be Less in Less-Developed Areas

The University of Chicago is saying that researchers studying the rate of schizophrenia in developed vs developing countries are challenging several assumptions about its differences in those two environments. Assumptions being disputed is that schizophrenia occurs at about a steady rate of 1% worldwide, that it occurs less often and is more benign in undeveloped countries, and that one reason for this may be that the ill people there live with, and are supported by, family. Instead, clusters of high rates and low rates of schizophrenia are found in different areas regardless of developed status, and some of the highest Read More...
Posted by Jeanie Wolfson at 06:04 AM | Comments (1)

March 17, 2007

Connection Between Schizophrenia and Not Understanding Emotional Tone of Speech

Some people with schizophrenia have a problem holding conversations. A theory as to one possible source of this problem, presented in the American Journal of Psychiatry, lies in their difficulty in discerning between fluctuating pitches of a voice, and thus, in understanding the emotional meaning people impart to their words. Both U.S. News and CNN have articles discussing this subject, with the U.S. News explaining that schizophrenia "appears to cause disconnections between nerve cells in the auditory regions of the brain, which prevents the brain from discerning changes in pitch like the deepening of a voice expressing frustration." CNN points Read More...
Posted by Jeanie Wolfson at 12:30 PM | Comments (0)

March 16, 2007

Progress Toward a Test for Detecting Childhood Risk For Schizophrenia

A team from Laval University in Quebec, Canada has announced that it has made significant progress toward finding a way to determine whether a child is likely to one day suffer from bipolar disorder or schizophrenia. The findings of the research team supervised by Dr. Michel Maziade, director of the research program., The research will be presented at the International Congress on Schizophrenia Research on March 31 in Colorado Springs. Schizophrenia and bipolar disorder are problems that emerge early on in life, but that are usually not diagnosed before the age of 15. The participants in Dr. Maziade's study -- Read More...
Posted by szadmin at 02:39 PM | Comments (0)

March 14, 2007

In Schizophrenia, Brain's Default Mode Seems to be Out of Sync

Read more... Schizophrenia Biology
The "default mode," or baseline condition when the brain is idling, is not properly coordinated in patients with schizophrenia and this aberrant activity may be caused by poor connectivity between brain networks, a Yale School of Medicine researcher reports. Co-author Godfrey Pearlson, M.D., professor of psychiatry, said he and his colleagues found that regions of the brain known previously to be individually abnormal in patients with schizophrenia, also function abnormally in concert in the default mode network. Although in normal comparison subjects, the network, as measured by its blood flow with fMRI, resonates slowly and regularly, in schizophrenia the activity Read More...
Posted by szadmin at 08:27 AM | Comments (3)

March 13, 2007

Mental illness common in veterans returning from Iraq and Afghanistan

The Journal of The American Medical Association (JAMA) reported this week that almost one-third of returning veterans who received health care at Veterans Affairs facilities between 2001 and 2005 were given a mental health or psychosocial diagnosis (which includes Post traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) substance abuse, as well as more serious disorders like schizophrenia. This high rate is what would be predicted given the high level of stress/trauma that many of these veterans have experienced, their young age, and the backgrounds of poverty that many young veterans come from. Some reports have suggested that soldiers returning from the most recent Read More...
Posted by szadmin at 10:09 AM | Comments (0)

March 09, 2007

Allon Therapeutics Successfull in Early Trial of New Schizophrenia Medication

Allon Therapeutics Inc announced today that the results of the completed Phase Ib clinical trial of a new schizophrenia drug temporarily named "AL-108" met all of its early safety objectives. The trial confirmed that AL-108 is safe and well tolerated in 32 healthy elderly subjects after seven days of dosing. This test is only a very early test of what will be a three phase FDA testing program, which will likely take 3 to 5 more years. Only after successfully passing these tests that prove effectiveness and safety, would the drug be made available to the public. AL-108 was recently Read More...
Posted by szadmin at 05:17 PM | Comments (1)

National Institute of Mental Health, 2008 Research and Budget Cuts

The following is an excerpt from a capital hill House Appropriations Committee hearing on the funding of major US mental health initiatives in the president's proposed 2008 budget. The discussion covers important funding issues (what programs are being cut), new trends in schizophrenia research into causes and treatments, as well as prevention efforts and community support programs. If you are interested in any of these topics - we recommend you read the entire discussion below. We found it extremely interesting - and we think you will too. Under discussion is the NIMH's $1.4 Billion budget - which sounds like a Read More...
Posted by szadmin at 02:56 PM | Comments (1)

Market Study Highlights New Therapies for Schizophrenia

A new market study for the pharmaceuticals industry by NI Research reviews the status and prospects of new treatments that are in development for schizophrenia. The review briefly notes the numerous 'me-too' drugs currently available and under development, including drugs from Vanda Pharmaceuticals, Organon, and Solvay. The bulk of the review looks at the next generations of treatments for schizophrenia. This includes the most promising biochemical pathways for intervention: including glutamatergic, nicotinic, and 5HT-6 targets. Some of the programs worth watching, the market report suggests, are those from Cortex partnered with Organon; Targacept ; Acadia Pharmaceuticals; Intra-Cellular Therapies; Memory Pharmaceuticals, Read More...
Posted by szadmin at 02:40 PM | Comments (0)

New Research Study on Noise Response and Schizophrenia Risk (Australia)

How people respond to noise may indicate whether they're likely to develop schizophrenia or Parkinson's disease, Australian researchers suggest - and they are now recruiting participants for a new study to learn more about this area. (we've reported on this in the past - see "startle response". The researchers from the Hunter Medical Research Institute are recruiting people for a study which will examine the relationship between these disorders and the way people process sound. Project Manager, Dr Linda Campbell, said previous research had revealed that the brain chemical dopamine modulated how we responded to unexpected or suddenly occurring noises. Read More...
Posted by szadmin at 02:07 PM | Comments (1)

$100 million Grant Targets Genetics of Schizophrenia

Once again we have to applaud the efforts of the Stanley family for their support of important research into mental illness. This week the Stanley Medical Research Institute announced a $100M gift to the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard to launch a new research center that will combine the strengths of genomics and chemical biology to advance the understanding and treatment of schizophrenia and bipolar disorder. The funding from the Stanley Medical Research Institute, a Maryland-based family philanthropy, will let the Broad Institute gather and analyze thousands of DNA samples from people with schizophrenia and bipolar disorder. Only in Read More...
Posted by szadmin at 01:53 PM | Comments (1)

March 08, 2007

Save Money on NAMI San Diego Conference until March 15th

Every year NAMI holds a national conference that includes expert speakers on mental health that can help you, or your family member have a better outcome. This year's conference takes place from June 20th to 24th in San Diego and we highly recommend you attend if you live close to San Diego. There are special discounts until March 15th, and even extra low prices for consumers. For most people it looks like from the conference Program that Friday the 22nd and Saturday the 23rd would be the best days to attend. Sign up today! Check the NAMI Web site for Read More...
Posted by szadmin at 11:48 AM | Comments (0)

March 07, 2007

Schizophrenia and Creativity: New York Features Artwork

The city of Rome, New York issued a press release announcing the exhibition of 80 pieces of brilliantly done artwork by a brother and sister duo. The exhibition is titled "Sibling Rivalry". The brother, who was diagnosed with schizophrenia in 2001, expresses his life and stuggles through his art, and pieces are inspired by his internal thoughts and feelings. "Sibling Rivalry" exhibit at Rome Art and Community Center The works of artists Karry Fuller Comfort and Timothy Foley will be on display in Rome Art And Community Center’s Galleries I & II in an exhibition entitled “Sibling Rivalry”, March 2—30, Read More...
Posted by Jeanie Wolfson at 11:25 AM | Comments (2)

Chemical in Sweat and Inability to Smell it May be Schizophrenia Marker

Some people with chronic schizophrenia characterized by predominantly disorganized and negative symptoms have been found to have an unusual, specific odor to their sweat and they have also been found to have impairment detecting certain odors. PsychiatryMatters.MD has reported on results from an Australian study, published in journal Psychiatry Research, which examined the link between these two findings. The chemical exuded in the sweat of these patients with chronic schizophrenia causing the distinct odor is a chemical called trans-3-methyl-2-hexenoic acid (MHA). The study found that the group of patients with chronic schizophrenia could not detect that chemical odor as well Read More...
Posted by Jeanie Wolfson at 05:30 AM | Comments (4)

March 06, 2007

A History of Mental Disorder Diagnosis (Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders)

The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders is the primary manual that psychiatrists and psychologists use to diagnose mental health problems in people. And, because insurance companies in the USA now require a diagnosis based on the DSM before they will reimburse or pay for the services, the DSM is required by any mental-health professional who wants to be compensated by companies (vs. direct payment by individuals). This month's New Yorker Magazine has an interesting story on the history of the manual and of the person who was key in its development. We recommend you check this story out Read More...
Posted by szadmin at 12:15 PM | Comments (2)

A Smell Test for Diagnosing Schizophrenia Before the Onset of Symptoms

For many years now we've been hearing about university researchers working on smell tests to help diagnose schizophrenia. This week news comes out of Australia that suggests the effort may be making some progress. Other researchers we've talked to have suggested that while this research is positive, the smell test (as its been done in the past) is too general in its identification of neurological disorders because smell problems can be caused by a number of different brain problems. It may, however, become one more diagnostic tool that helps identify early risk of schizophrenia which would still be a valuable Read More...
Posted by szadmin at 08:16 AM | Comments (1)

March 05, 2007

Childhood-Onset Schizophrenia is Challenging to Both Diagnose and to Treat

Childhood-onset schizophrenia (COS), like autism, is considered to be a developmental disorder involving the brain. It is characterized by onset of psychosis before the age of 13, typically preceded by co-occuring (comorbid) symptoms which overlap with those of autism spectrum disorders, affective disorders, behavior and attentional disorders, and often involves learning disabilities especially in the areas of speech and language. 99% of children with COS or childhood-onset schizoaffective disorder have comorbid diagnoses. According to an article in the Psychiatric Times which discusses the challenges of diagnosing and treating childhood-onset schizophrenia, COS occurs in less than 1 in 10,000 children, and Read More...
Posted by Jeanie Wolfson at 06:50 PM | Comments (1)

Studies Show How Stress Damages Young Brains

Research in the past has suggested that people who are genetically or biologically predisposed to schizophrenia and other mental illnesses are more sensitive to stress in their family and broader social environment. (see research here, here and here - and social isolation also causes significant stress for children). This area of research on how environment affects genes is called epigenetics, and we've covered this topic in the past here. This past week there have been two studies published that suggest how stress may damage the brains of young children. The first study is based on new research from the Child Read More...
Posted by szadmin at 09:02 AM | Comments (4)

Four Types of Schizophrenia May Have Been Identified

For many years researchers have said that they believe that the brain disorder known as schizophrenia is actually a number of different disorders all grouped under a single label because of similar symptoms. In the past researchers have not been able to prove this theory, but now a London-based company has some intriguing evidence that may move research forward in this area. The company is called Curidium Medica PLC and it announced recently that it believes it has found four "unique and statistically significant" subgroups of schizophrenia and bipolar disorder patients based on their gene expression profiles which may lead Read More...
Posted by szadmin at 09:00 AM | Comments (2)

March 03, 2007

Schizophrenia Drug Studies: One Size Does Not Fit All; Community Services Also Needed

The following is from a press release from NAMI. The American Journal of Psychiatry today published two studies representing the most recent installment of the "Clinical Antipsychotic Trials of Intervention Effectiveness" (CATIE) funded by the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) in the treatment of schizophrenia. Ken Duckworth, M.D., medical director of the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) issued the following statement commenting on the studies: "The latest findings provide two important guideposts for doctors and consumers. First, choices exist among medications for schizophrenia. One size does not fit all. Second, medication alone is not enough to overcome the Read More...
Posted by Jeanie Wolfson at 03:47 PM | Comments (0)

Medication is Not Enough: Job and Family Counseling Needed as Well

Based on the outcome of a new CATIE study announced in a press release issued by the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), the USA Today reported on the study's finding that in order to live independently with a better quality of life, more community services in the areas of job training and family counseling are needed. When patients stay on medication, they had improved social relations and "real-world" functioning, but that improvement was greatest for the most ill - the very ones who were least likely to stay on the medications. More help is needed - and that help Read More...
Posted by Jeanie Wolfson at 08:08 AM | Comments (1)

March 02, 2007

Patients May Try Many Medications Before Finding One That Helps

The following is the first part of a press release issued by the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) that addresses a perplexing fact that patients and families coming to this site have often stated - that finding "the right" medication for them can be a frustrating ordeal. This portion of the press release reports on second generation antipsychotic medications tried after a first-generation antipsychotic medication has failed. The outcome shows that patients may need to try multiple medications before finding one that is tolerable and effective for them. New Details in Schizophrenia Treatment Trial Emerge Two new studies from Read More...
Posted by Jeanie Wolfson at 09:05 PM | Comments (9)

Older Men at Increased Risk of Fathering Children with Schizophrenia

Many people know that as women age, their fertility diminishes. Egg cells age over the years and eventually women pass a stage when egg cells are available at all. However, the New York Times is reminding men that their reproductive capacity is affected over the years as well. As men age not only does their fertility diminish, but even more disturbingly, the quality of their sperm's DNA can diminish as well. Beginning in men's 40s, this lowering of sperm quality can increase the likelihood of their offspring being born with developmental problems caused by genetic abnormalities such as autism and Read More...
Posted by Jeanie Wolfson at 12:50 PM | Comments (0)

March 01, 2007

Lawsuit Demands Care for Imprisoned Veterans with Mental Illnesses

Hundreds of military veterans with mental illnesses in Colorado are in prison due to untreated mental illnesses or currently on parole and are not being provided treatment. They are then further punished for violations of parole stemming from behavior related to their untreated mental illnesses (such as walking away from a homeless shelter). According to the Rocky Mountains News, a federal lawsuit is being rallied on behalf of these Colorado veterans. Originally filed on behalf of one veteran with bipolar disorder and schizophrenia, a class-action status is now being sought in order to benefit other veterans receiving Veterans Affairs care Read More...
Posted by Jeanie Wolfson at 01:10 PM | Comments (0)

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