News Releases & Research Results Lipid metabolism disorder in the cerebral white matter of schizophrenia patients - Unknown pathogenesis of schizophrenia -

News Releases & Research Results


The results of the international collaborative research project conducted by Researcher Chie Shimamoto and Team Leader Takeo Yoshikawa of the Laboratory of Molecular Psychiatry, RIKEN Center for Brain Science.

The key results of research are as follows:

  • A lipid metabolism-related gene network was demonstrated to be disordered in the cerebral white matter* of schizophrenic patients.
    *An area of the central nervous system with myelinated nerve fibers densely accumulated.
  • Specifically, the quantitative lipid analysis was conducted with corpora callosa, the largest white matter structure, from schizophrenic patients using a mass analyzer, revealing changes in specific lipid content patterns in some of the patients and the involvement of the gene network originating from transcription factor “NFATC2” and the abnormalities of “microglia*,” a type of glial cell, in the pathogenesis of schizophrenia.
    *A type of glial cell involved in the central nervous system, responsible for immunity in the brain.
  • The results of this research project should facilitate the development of new treatments for schizophrenia.

This program was conducted with the support of the Advanced Research and Development Programs for Medical Innovation (AMED-CREST) and the Strategic Research Program for Brain Sciences by AMED.

The results of this research project were published online in the scientific journal Cerebral CORTEX on September 14.



Last updated 09/14/20