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Neuropsychopharmacology : official publication of the American College of Neuropsychopharmacology

Synaptic proteins in the postmortem anterior cingulate cortex in schizophrenia: relationship to treatment and treatment response.


PMID 24603856

Abstract

The anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) is one of several brain regions that are abnormal in schizophrenia (SZ). Here we compared markers of synapse and mitochondrial function using western blots of postmortem ACC in: 1) normal controls (NCs, n=13) vs subjects with SZ (n=25); NC, treatment-resistant SZ, and treatment-responsive SZ; and 3) NC and SZ treated with typical or atypical antipsychotic drugs (APDs). Protein levels of synaptophysin, mitofusin-2, vGLUT1, and calcineurin did not differ between the NC and SZ group as a whole, or the NCs vs the SZ group divided by treatment response or type of APDs. In several cases, the levels of vGLUT1 were minuscule or absent. The proportion of NCs lacking vGLUT1 was significantly less than that of the SZ groups. There were several positive correlations across all subjects between: 1) synaptophysin and vGLUT1; 2) synaptophysin and calcineurin; 3) synaptophysin and mitofusin; and 4) calcineurin and mitofusin. Synaptophysin and calcineurin were positively correlated in responders, and this correlation was significantly stronger than that in treatment-resistant SZ subjects or in NCs. Synaptophysin and calcineurin were positively correlated in SZ patients on atypical APDs; this correlation was significantly stronger than that in SZ patients on typical APDs or in NCs. Mitofusin-2 and calcineurin were positively correlated in SZ patients on atypical APDs and in NCs; this correlation was stronger in SZ patients on atypical rather than typical APDs or in NCs. The correlation between these proteins, which have roles in synaptic vesicle cycling, glutamate transmission, mitochondrial fusion, and calcium buffering, is complex and was differentially regulated among the groups.