Elevated Homocysteine and Schizophrenia (2007)

Elevated plasma levels of the amino acid homocysteine have been associated with schizophrenia, particularly in young male patients. Among other factors, low folic acid and vitamin B12 levels have been implicated in the increase in homocysteine.

In this study, 100 inpatients with chronic schizophrenia and 100 ‘normal controls’ had their blood levels of homocysteine, vitamin B12 and folic acid measured. While there was no difference in blood levels of  folic acid or B12, the schizophrenia patients had higher homocysteine (15.42 v 11.54 µmol/l, p<0.001).

Both young and older females as well as younger males with schizophrenia had increased plasma homocysteine compared to controls. We therefore suggest that homocysteinemia is a general risk factor for schizophrenia

Haidemenos A, et al., Plasma homocysteine, folate and B12 in chronic schizophrenia, Prog Neuropsychopharmacol Biol Psychiatry. 2007 Aug 15;31(6):1289-96

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