A recent study which was published in a journal Molecular Psychiatry in October 2017, suggested that Schizophrenia, a brain disorder disturbs the whole brain communication network.
The research conflicts a theory which considers schizophrenia as a resultant of the wiring problem in a few specific regions of the brain. Thus, the findings of the study might help the future researchers to study the disorder that affects almost 2 million people all over the world.
Sinead Kelly, a former researcher at Neuroimaging and Informatics Institute at the University of Southern California’s Keck School of Medicine said that, “We can definitively say for the first time that schizophrenia is a disorder where white matter wiring is frayed throughout the brain”.
During the research brain scan of the schizophrenia patients was also done, the scan was made on 1900 people worldwide. It concluded that “white matter” is the fatty brain tissue which is responsible for the interaction between the neurons (brain cells).
Kelly also commented that, “Our study will help improve the understanding of the mechanisms behind schizophrenia, a mental illness that — left untreated — often leads to unemployment, homelessness, substance abuse and even suicide”. She also added, “These findings could lead to the identification of biomarkers that enable researchers to test patients’ response to schizophrenia treatment”.
Till date, no specific cause for the schizophrenia disorder is known and the treatment is based on symptoms. The patients with schizophrenia are administered with anti-psychotic drugs which have certain side effects like weight gain, tremor, emotional numbness, etc.
Another researcher Neda Jahanshad, Assistant Professor of Neurology at USC/Keck said, “Without this study, future research could have been misdirected. Rather than looking for genes that affect a certain ‘stretch of wiring,’ scientists will now look for genes that affect the brain’s entire communication infrastructure”.