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What is the role of glutamate in schizophrenia?

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Glutamate is a chemical involved in the part of the brain that forms memories and helps us learn new things. It also tells parts of the brain what to do.

One study found that people who are at risk for developing schizophrenia may have too much glutamate activity in certain areas of the brain at first. As the disease progresses, those brain areas may have too little glutamate activity.

Doctors are working to find out how brain circuits that use these chemicals work together or are related to each other.

SOURCES:

Rubio, M. , published online January 2012. Biomolecules & Therapeutics

National Institute of Mental Health: “Schizophrenia.”

Brisch, R., , published online May 2014. Frontiers in Psychiatry

Vaibhav A. Diwadkar, PhD, associate professor, psychiatry and behavioral neurosciences; co-director, Brain Imaging Research division, Wayne State University School of Medicine, Detroit. 

Columbia University Medical Center: “High Levels of Glutamate in Brain May Kick-Start Schizophrenia,” published online April 2013.

Reviewed by Jennifer Casarella on December 4, 2019

SOURCES:

Rubio, M. , published online January 2012. Biomolecules & Therapeutics

National Institute of Mental Health: “Schizophrenia.”

Brisch, R., , published online May 2014. Frontiers in Psychiatry

Vaibhav A. Diwadkar, PhD, associate professor, psychiatry and behavioral neurosciences; co-director, Brain Imaging Research division, Wayne State University School of Medicine, Detroit. 

Columbia University Medical Center: “High Levels of Glutamate in Brain May Kick-Start Schizophrenia,” published online April 2013.

Reviewed by Jennifer Casarella on December 4, 2019

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