Schizophrenia is not 1 but 8 different types: New study

In a key finding, researchers have found that brain disorder schizophrenia has eight different types and not a single type, as earlier thought.

Schizophrenia consists of a group made up of eight genetically different types of diseases, each of which presents its own set of symptoms, said researchers.

It was believed that almost 80 percent of the risk of suffering from schizophrenia was hereditary, but scientists have been struggling for years to identify which specific genes lead to it.

The new study shows that various genes networks contribute to the existence of eight types of schizophrenia. “Genes do not operate on their own, in an isolated manner,” said study co-author Igor Zwir, researcher at University of Granada in Spain. “They rather work with each other as an orchestra,” Zwir said.

brainThe study involved 4,196 patients diagnosed with schizophrenia and 3,200 healthy patients who volunteered to participate as control group.

“What we did with this research is identify the manner in which the genes interact with each other, in an orchestrated manner in the case of healthy patients, or disorganised, as happens in the cases that lead to the different types of schizophrenia”, the authors said.

The researchers divided the patients according to the type and seriousness of positive symptoms including different types of hallucinations or deliriums, or negative symptoms such as lack of initiative, troubles in organising thoughts, or lack of connection between emotion and thought.

In parallel, scientists classified the profiles of these symptoms into eight qualitative types of different diseases according to the underlying genetic conditions.

The study appeared in the American Journal of Psychiatry.(IANS)

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