Glutamatergic and GABAergic disturbances as markers of choice-of-treatment – part of Pan European Collaboration on Antipsychotic Naïve Schizophrenia II (PECANS II)


Insufficient response to antipsychotic drugs constitutes a major challenge in the treatment of patients with schizophrenia and other targets than the dopamine D2 receptors are highly warranted. Twenty to thirty % of patients do not respond sufficiently to antipsychotic medication, which may be related to persistent high levels of glutamate, the main excitatory neurotransmitter in the brain. However, the relationship of glutamatergic disturbances to psychopathology and level of functioning is largely unknown.

The aim is to clarify the relationship between glutamatergic disturbances in the two interconnected brain areas anterior cingulate cortex and thalamus to psychopathology and level of functioning in 40 anti-psychotic naïve patients with schizophrenia before and after 6 weeks treatment with aripiprazol.

Design: Prospective 6 week follow-up study of 40 antipsychotic naïve patients with schizophrenia.
Tests: Glutamatergic activity is measured with proton magnetic resonance imaging (1H-MRS), psychopathology and level of function with clinical rating scales, and patients are also examined with psychophysiological and neuropsychological test batteries. Tests are performed at baseline, after 6 weeks, 6 months and 2 years, and patients will be matched with healthy controls.
Treatment: The antipsychotic compound aripiprazol is used as a tool compound, since it is recommended as a first choice treatment of psychosis by the national guidelines (RADS-criteria).

Inclusion started the 1st of January 2014 and is expected to continue until December 2018. So far 3 patients have been included. Analysis of data has not yet taken place.
For more information about the project or referral of patients, please contact:
Kirsten Borup Bojesen at or telephone: 21 43 10 09

Clarification of the relationship between glutamatergic disturbances and psychopathology can open the way for development of new antipsychotic medication modulating glutamatergic disturbances. It is the hope that glutamatergic disturbances in the future can be used as a clinical marker for best choice of treatment in the daily clinic.
Publikationsdatomar. 2014
Antal sider1
StatusUdgivet - mar. 2014
BegivenhedDPS Årsmøde - Nyborg Strand, Danmark
Varighed: 20 mar. 201422 mar. 2014


KonferenceDPS Årsmøde
LokationNyborg Strand