MRI may help predict schizophrenia

December 8, 2006

Brain scans may help predict schizophrenia, Scottish researchers say, by detecting changes in the brain's gray matter.

When combined with traditional assessments, tracking gray matter changes over time could help physicians better predict the disorder, the BBC said.

In their study, University of Edinburgh researchers analyzed MRI brain scans of 65 young people at high risk of developing schizophrenia because family histories indicated two or more members were diagnosed with the illness.

In just over two years after the first scan, eight participants developed schizophrenia. Researchers said MRIs indicated a reduction of gray matter in an area of the brain linked to processing anxiety prior to the patients' exhibited symptoms.

"Although there are no preventative treatments for the illness, an accurate predictive test could help researchers to assess possibilities for prevention in the future," said lead researcher Dominic Job.

The findings were published in the BMC Medicine journal.

Copyright 2006 by United Press International

Explore further: Neuroscientist studies connection between PTSD and alcohol abuse

Related Stories

Mother uncovers lasting impact of baby son's organ donation

September 25, 2016

An ultrasound showed one of Sarah Gray's unborn twins was missing part of his brain, a fatal birth defect. His brother was born healthy but Thomas lived just six days. Latching onto hope for something positive to come from ...

Recommended for you

Artificial beta cells

December 8, 2016

Researchers led by ETH Professor Martin Fussenegger at the Department of Biosystems Science and Engineering (D-BSSE) in Basel have produced artificial beta cells using a straightforward engineering approach.

Key regulator of bone development identified

December 8, 2016

Loss of a key protein leads to defects in skeletal development including reduced bone density and a shortening of the fingers and toes—a condition known as brachydactyly. The discovery was made by researchers at Penn State ...

Researchers question lifelong immunity to toxoplasmosis

December 8, 2016

Medical students are taught that once infected with Toxoplasma gondii—the "cat parasite"—then you're protected from reinfection for the rest of your life. This dogma should be questioned, argue researchers in an Opinion ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.