Salud Mental

Prodromes and biological markers in schizophrenia: Importance for the dopamine, glutamate, and neurodevelopmental hypothesis


Juan Pablo Díaz-Sánchez
Héctor Solís-Chagoyán
Gloria A. Benítez-King


Background. Since schizophrenia is a multifactorial mental illness, a basic understanding of its etiological components improves its understanding, diagnosis, and the selection of therapeutic targets.

Objective. To identify the prodromes and biological markers in schizophrenic or ultra-high risk (UHR) patients and elucidate their specificity.

Method. Narrative review of relevant sources in English and Spanish in the Medline-PubMed database on minor physical abnormalities, cognitive abnormalities, neuroanatomical, and synaptic and cell changes present in schizophrenic patients and/or subjects with a high risk of developing schizophrenia

Results. Patients with SZ and, to a lesser extent, UHR subjects present phenotypic and behavioral manifestations that correlate with underlying cell processes. The study of the latter makes it possible to characterize diagnostic biomarkers. At present, its clinical application is limited by factors such as poorly understood pathophysiology, lack of study models, homology with other psychiatric disorders, and the dearth of clinical trials conducted.

Discussion and conclusion. Schizophrenia is the final manifestation of damage to prenatal and post-natal neurodevelopment and is reflected during the prodromal stage in early biological markers with clinical relevance. It is necessary to establish new study models that will increase knowledge to offer specific biomarkers for use in early clinical diagnosis.
Schizophrenia, etiology, risk factors, biomarkers, synapsis, dopamine, NMDAR


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