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Rasmussen H, Erritzoe D, Andersen R, Ebdrup BH, Aggernaes B, Oranje B, Kalbitzer J, Madsen J, Pinborg LH, Baaré W, Svarer C, Lublin H, Knudsen GM, Glenthoj B. Decreased frontal serotonin2A receptor binding in antipsychotic-naive patients with first-episode schizophrenia. Arch Gen Psychiatry . 2010 Jan ; 67(1):9-16. PubMed Abstract

Comments on Paper and Primary News
Primary News: Serotonin Receptors Appear Reduced in First-Episode Schizophrenia

Comment by:  Brian Dean
Submitted 18 January 2010 Posted 18 January 2010

Serotonin2A Receptors and Schizophrenia: The Controversies Continue
A new study reporting decreased serotonin2A receptor (HTR2A) density in drug naïve first-episode schizophrenia (Rasmussen et al., 2010) has again raised the issue of the role of that receptor in the pathophysiology of the disorder.

The notion that the HTR2A is involved in pathophysiology and treatment of schizophrenia remains an open issue. The observation that a number of the atypical antipsychotic drugs are high-affinity antagonists at the receptor would suggest that blocking stimulation of the receptor can have some therapeutic benefit (Meltzer, 1995). It is also significant that, overall, available data from postmortem studies would suggest that the HTR2A is decreased in density in the cortex of subjects with schizophrenia (Dean, 2003). This could either be due to altered gene expression per se or an appropriate agonist induced...  Read more

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Primary News: Serotonin Receptors Appear Reduced in First-Episode Schizophrenia

Comment by:  Albert Adell
Submitted 18 January 2010 Posted 18 January 2010

The search for biomarkers in complex psychiatric disorders such as schizophrenia has been a crucial goal in clinical research, but remains to be fully accomplished. Serotonin 5-HT2A receptors have been associated with the pathophysiology and pharmacotherapy of schizophrenia for two main reasons: 5-HT2A receptor agonists such as LSD elicit hallucinogenic states in humans and second-generation, atypical antipsychotics are effective 5-HT2A receptor antagonists. However, 5-HT2A receptor agonists usually evoke visual hallucinations, whereas those associated with schizophrenia are commonly auditory (Hollister, 1962). Contradictory changes in 5-HT2A receptor density in cortical areas of the brain have been detected in several postmortem studies. The case-control study of Rasmussen and coworkers (Rasmussen et al., 2010) shows decreased 5-HT2A binding in the frontal cortex of antipsychotic-free, first-episode schizophrenics. Although similar findings were previously observed...  Read more

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