Neurodevelopmental involvement in schizophrenia: the olfactory epithelium as an alternative model for research

J Neurochem. 2007 Aug;102(3):587-94. doi: 10.1111/j.1471-4159.2007.04628.x.


It has been suggested that disturbances during neurodevelopment may play a crucial role in the etiology of schizophrenia (SZ). This premise is supported by brain imaging, epidemiological, and pathological studies as well as the discovery of susceptibility genes for SZ that appear to be implicated in development of the central nervous system. Here, we discuss the limitations of the current methods and models for studying the neurodevelopmental implications in SZ. We agree with the proposal that the olfactory epithelium, in which neurodevelopment continues throughout life, might represent an alternative model for understanding the pathophysiology of the disorder.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Brain / growth & development*
  • Brain / metabolism
  • Brain / physiopathology*
  • Cell Differentiation / genetics
  • Genetic Predisposition to Disease / genetics
  • Humans
  • Nerve Tissue Proteins / genetics
  • Nerve Tissue Proteins / metabolism
  • Olfaction Disorders / complications
  • Olfaction Disorders / genetics
  • Olfaction Disorders / physiopathology
  • Olfactory Mucosa / growth & development*
  • Olfactory Mucosa / metabolism
  • Olfactory Mucosa / physiopathology*
  • Schizophrenia / genetics*
  • Schizophrenia / physiopathology*


  • Nerve Tissue Proteins