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BACKGROUND Precise mechanisms underlying the pathophysiology of autism are currently unknown. Given the major role of glutamate in brain development, we have hypothesized that glutamatergic neurotransmission plays a role in the pathophysiology of autism. In this study, we studied whether amino acids (glutamate, glutamine, glycine, D-serine, and L-serine)(More)
BACKGROUND Maternal viral infection is associated with increased risk for schizophrenia. It is hypothesized that the maternal immune response to viruses may influence fetal brain development and lead to schizophrenia. METHODS To mimic a viral infection, the synthetic double strand RNA polyriboinosinic-polyribocytidilic acid (poly I:C) was administered(More)
BACKGROUND Because researchers have reported that antidepressants increase the expression of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) in the rat hippocampus, we investigated whether serum BDNF levels may be used as a putative biological marker for major depressive disorders (MDD). METHODS We measured serum BDNF in the following three groups:(More)
The purpose of this review is to integrate what is currently known about the role of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) in the pathophysiology of mood disorders including major depressive disorder (MDD) and bipolar disorder (BD). We reviewed the pre-clinical and clinical papers demonstrating that BDNF plays a role in the pathophysiology of mood(More)
OBJECTIVE A positron emission tomography (PET) study has suggested that dopamine transporter density of the caudate/putamen is reduced in methamphetamine users. The authors measured nucleus accumbens and prefrontal cortex density, in addition to caudate/putamen density, in methamphetamine users and assessed the relation of these measures to the subjects'(More)
BACKGROUND Accumulating evidence suggests that alpha7 nicotinic receptor (alpha7 nAChR) agonists could be potential therapeutic drugs for cognitive deficits in schizophrenia. The present study was undertaken to examine the effects of the novel selective alpha7 nAChR agonist SSR180711 on cognitive deficits in mice after repeated administration of the(More)
CONTEXT We can improve understanding of human methamphetamine dependence, and possibly our abilities to prevent and treat this devastating disorder, by identifying genes whose allelic variants predispose to methamphetamine dependence. OBJECTIVE To find "methamphetamine dependence" genes identified by each of 2 genome-wide association (GWA) studies of(More)
BACKGROUND Meta-analyses have identified serum levels of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) as a potential biomarker for major depressive disorder (MDD). However, at the time, commercially available human ELISA kits are unable to distinguish between proBDNF (precursor of BDNF) and mature BDNF because of limited BDNF antibody specificity. In this(More)
BACKGROUND We previously reported a reduction in serum levels of D-serine, an endogenous co-agonist of the N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptor, in schizophrenia, supporting the hypofunction hypothesis of NMDA neurotransmission in schizophrenia. In this study, we examined the genetic roles of serine racemase (SRR), an enzyme catalyzing the formation of(More)