Phospholipase C-beta1 knockout mice exhibit endophenotypes modeling schizophrenia which are rescued by environmental enrichment and clozapine administration

Mol Psychiatry. 2008 Jul;13(7):661-72. doi: 10.1038/ Epub 2007 Jul 31.


Phospholipase C-beta1 (PLC-beta1) is a rate-limiting enzyme implicated in postnatal-cortical development and neuronal plasticity. PLC-beta1 transduces intracellular signals from specific muscarinic, glutamate and serotonin receptors, all of which have been implicated in the pathogenesis of schizophrenia. Here, we present data to show that PLC-beta1 knockout mice display locomotor hyperactivity, sensorimotor gating deficits as well as cognitive impairment. These changes in behavior are regarded as endophenotypes homologous to schizophrenia-like symptoms in rodents. Importantly, the locomotor hyperactivity and sensorimotor gating deficits in PLC-beta1 knockout mice are subject to beneficial modulation by environmental enrichment. Furthermore, clozapine but not haloperidol (atypical and typical antipsychotics, respectively) rescues the sensorimotor gating deficit in these animals, suggesting selective predictive validity. We also demonstrate a relationship between the beneficial effects of environmental enrichment and levels of M1/M4 muscarinic acetylcholine receptor binding in the neocortex and hippocampus. Thus we have demonstrated a novel mouse model, displaying disruption of multiple postsynaptic signals implicated in the pathogenesis of schizophrenia, a relevant behavioral phenotype and associated gene-environment interactions.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antipsychotic Agents / therapeutic use
  • Clozapine / therapeutic use*
  • Disease Models, Animal
  • Environment
  • Hippocampus / physiopathology
  • Mice
  • Mice, Knockout
  • Motor Activity
  • Neocortex / physiopathology
  • Phenotype
  • Phospholipase C beta / deficiency*
  • Receptors, Muscarinic / physiology
  • Schizophrenia / drug therapy
  • Schizophrenia / enzymology
  • Schizophrenia / genetics*
  • Schizophrenia / rehabilitation*
  • Schizophrenic Psychology


  • Antipsychotic Agents
  • Receptors, Muscarinic
  • Phospholipase C beta
  • Clozapine