All rights reserved. The researchers explain that C4 genes have significant variability in their structure, meaning the number of copies and variants of the gene can differ from person to person. "This is a major breakthrough, we have found immune cells on the brain side of the endothelial wall, in greater amounts in people with schizophrenia and inflammation," says Weickert. Deconstruction of the schizophrenia “syndrome” is widely endorsed and work is being done to get at the relevant dimensions of the condition to determine how they can be influenced. “These results show that it is possible to go from genetic data to a new way of thinking about how a disease develops – something that has been greatly needed.”, For some people, wearing headphones may aid sleep. This discovery shows that specific immune cells are in the brains of some people with schizophrenia in close enough proximity to the neurons to do damage. Professor Shannon Weickert said immune cells have previously been ignored as they had long been viewed simply as travelers just thought to be passing by, undertaking surveillance work. This article looks at some of the recent theories about…. Introducing Schizophrenia Bulletin Open. Now, for the first time, researchers have shed light on the biological origin of the illness. October 28, 2020 05:24 AM Eastern Daylight Time. Commenting on the results, Bruce Cuthbert, acting director of the National Institute of Mental Health – which helped fund the study – says: “This study marks a crucial turning point in the fight against mental illness. And it is no wonder scientists are so excited; discovering that the C4 gene may play a key role in a person’s risk of schizophrenia may open the door to strategies that prevent the illness. It is estimated that around 21 million people across the globe have schizophrenia, with symptom onset most common in late adolescence or early adulthood. Employing new molecular techniques allowed Professor Shannon Weickert and her team to identify the presence of a fourth cell, the macrophage, a type of immune cell in the brain tissue of people with schizophrenia who show high levels of inflammation. Read our COVID-19 research and news. It suggests immune cells themselves may be producing these inflammatory signals in the brains of people living with schizophrenia,” said Professor Shannon Weickert. In some cases, the person is already symptomatic, and due to being exposed to an extremely traumatic experience, an existing mental health condition becomes exacerbated and symptoms intensify. NeuRA Media Department +61(0)409225447 or email@example.com, Katrina Usman +61(0)432760940 or firstname.lastname@example.org. November 5, 2020 by Hong Kong University of Science and Technology The team uses the newly-developed methodology to study AD patients brain at single cell level. Hand weakness can occur due to many different health conditions. The team says their findings may explain why schizophrenia tends to develop in late adolescence or early adulthood; excessive synaptic pruning caused by increased C4 activity at this point in time may trigger symptom onset. The study published today in Molecular Psychiatry has the potential to transform global schizophrenia research and open new avenues for developing targeted immune cell therapies. We identified immune cells as a new player in the brain pathology of schizophrenia,” said Professor Shannon Weickert. Using this adapted method to see what role C4 plays in the brains of mice, the researchers found that the gene is key for synaptic pruning – the process by which synapses are streamlined, which normally occurs in late adolescence/early adulthood in humans. 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