Biological Psychiatry: A Review of Recent Advances by J. R. Smythies

By J. R. Smythies

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S. (1961). 'Effect of aminoacid feedings in schizophrenic patients treated with iproniazid'. Science, 133, 104-105, 48 Biological Psychiatry Pfeiffer, C. C , Beck, R. , Neiss, E. S. (1967). 'Etiology of the stimulant nature of the schizophrenias'. In Ch. 16 in Recent Advances in Biological Psychiatry, Vol. IX (J. ). New York, Pergamon Press, pp. 241-249. Price, J. , Brown, R. , Peters, H. A. (1959). 'Tryptophan metabolism in porphyria, schizophrenia and a variety of neurologic and psychiatric disorders'.

3) Chlorpromazine is a potent inhibitor of N-methyl transferase. This is the enzyme discovered in mammalian tissue by Axelrod that will convert tryptamine into the hallucinogenic drug dimethyltryptamine. This action would fit in with the disordered methylation theory of schizophrenia. 44 Biological Psychiatry (4) In brain slices stimulated electrically, chlorpromazine erases the consequent increase in aerobic glycolysis and oxygen consumption. These actions (except 2) occur only in slices or homogenates of brain tissue and not in membraneless preparations.

The hallucinations, thought disorder and emotional and behavioural responses deteriorated in a manner that suggested to the clinicians that the schizophrenic process was being specifically exacerbated, rather than that a non-specific toxic psychosis was being superadded. The subjects were chronic schizo­ phrenics and only a proportion of them showed this response. The fact that makes this communication unique in this field is that it is the only one about which there is general agreement. This effect of methionine has been confirmed by Brune and Himwich (1962a) and Alexander et al.

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