Biomedical expert says brain “wiring” problems affect schizophrenia

brain-wiringNew schizophrenia research conducted into issues affecting those in biomedical science jobs has prompted one expert to suggest some of the problem may be down to basic functions in certain brain areas.

Professor Phillip McGuire, from the NIHR Biomedical Research Centre for Mental Health and the Institute of Psychiatry (IoP), remarked that, although the origins of the illness in early brain growth can be pin-pointed, what triggers the onset of symptoms is still not clear.

“Our study suggests that at least part of the answer lies in problems affecting the ‘wiring’ of key brain areas,” he added.

The examination, carried out by the IoP researchers at King’s College London and published in the British Journal of Psychiatry, showed that abnormal white matter in the brain may have a significant effect on the timing of schizophrenia onset.

Dr Sophia Frangou, Professor McGuire’s research partner, commented that the investigation is one of a kind in the field because it takes a “life-long view” on the condition.

Schizophrenia is a chronic mental illness, which triggers hallucinations and delusions in sufferers, with one in 100 people experiencing at least one episode in their lifetime.