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Schizophrenia

Essay by   •  February 3, 2011  •  Essay  •  313 Words (2 Pages)  •  837 Views

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Since glutamate is the main neurotransmitter that sends information from the Central Nervous System, and can likely be found on every neuron in the brain it has the ability to affect every function of the body. Scientists have recently begun recording results from studies done on glutamate and associations with Schizophrenia. The results are far from conclusive but do start to answer some questions formerly unanswerable due to lack of research.

Not only is glutamate the major excitatory neurotransmitter, but it also helps determine neuronal form and mold neural circuitry. Glutamate can therefore be constructive and destructive. "When glutamate binds to its receptors depolarization occurs causing various molecules to modulate the developmental processes listed above."

It is currently believed that the psychotic phase of schizophrenia does not appear until adolescence but that there may be a visible developmental component of the disease present at earlier ages. Glutamatergic testing has led some scientists to hypothesize that "altered glutamate function...may be part of the pathogenic mechanism leading to psychosis."

In the human brain neural circuits constantly undergo rearrangement. This article would lead us to believe that in people with schizophrenia the glutamatergic signaling causes functional changes which may lead to the progression of the disease. Because of this it is also believed that by studying glutamate we are advancing the pathophysiology of schizophrenia.

I think that by doing this research we are in fact advancing our knowledge of schizophrenia. I believe that any wisdom we gain is in our benefit. Surely we can find a cure, or create a medicine that slows the process down. Is it not our duty as humans to try to protect and preserve each other? Schizophrenia is one of many terrible diseases that should be eliminated. Glutamate research might not be the final solution, but surely it is one of the keys.

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