The metabolic effects of antipsychotic drugs

Research to be presented at the upcoming annual meeting of the Society for the Study of Ingestive Behavior (SSIB), the foremost society for research into all aspects of eating and drinking behavior, may explain why some antipsychotic drugs can promote overeating, weight gain, and insulin resistance.

Olanzapine, an atypical antipsychotic drug approved by the FDA for the treatment of schizophrenia and bipolar disorder, has been associated with body weight gain and impaired glucose homeostasis in humans and in experimental animals. As part of a Dutch research consortium, studies led by Simon Evers (University of Groningen, the Netherlands) sought to reveal underlying mechanisms for olanzapine's metabolic effects by studying healthy adult male volunteers. The research was motivated by observations of what co-author Anton Scheurink described as "a mysterious interaction between schizophrenia and diabetes."

Their results confirmed previous findings that olanzapine induces weight gain by increasing caloric intake, but also revealed that olanzapine reduces body temperature, which contributes to decreased energy expenditure. Indeed, reduced body temperature after olanzapine treatment may generate many of the known side effects of this antipsychotic drug. The authors' new findings also demonstrate that olanzapine alters peripheral , which may contribute to impaired . According to lead author Simon Evers, "Our research group believes that reduced body temperature is the foremost direct and consistent effect of olanzapine in humans and in experimental animals. Reduced body temperature might explain several of olanzapine's metabolic side effects, including increased food intake, reduced energy expenditure, sedation, , body weight gain, and ."

Related Stories

Combating weight gain caused by antipsychotic treatments

date Mar 26, 2009

Antipsychotic drugs, such as olanzapine (Zyprexa), risperidone (Risperdal) and quetiapine (Seroquel), are commonly used to treat psychotic disorders like schizophrenia, but also bipolar disorder and even behavioral problems ...

Recommended for you

Breathless: How blood-oxygen levels regulate air intake

date 1 hour ago

Researchers have unraveled the elusive process by which small, highly vascular clusters of sensory cells in the carotid arteries "taste the blood," as a 1926 essay put it—the initial step in regulating ...

Sex matters ... even for liver cells

date 2 hours ago

Female liver cells, and in particular those in menopaused women, are more susceptible to adverse effects of drugs than their male counterparts, according to new research carried out by the JRC. It is well ...

Caring for blindness: A new protein in sight?

date 3 hours ago

Vasoproliferative ocular diseases are responsible for sight loss in millions of people in the industrialised countries. Many patients do not currently respond to the treatment offered, which targets a specific ...

When genes are expressed in reverse

date 3 hours ago

Genes usually always be expressed as in Western writing: from left to right on the white canvas of our DNA. So when we speak of the activity of our genome, in fact we are referring to the expression of genes ...

Technique could speed biologic drugs

date 8 hours ago

Antibodies are specific molecules that can lock onto a particular cellular structure to start, stop or otherwise temper a biological process. Because they are so specific, antibodies are at the forefront ...

User 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.