Neuropeptide deficits in schizophrenia vs. Alzheimer's disease cerebral cortex

Biol Psychiatry. 1996 Jan 15;39(2):82-91. doi: 10.1016/0006-3223(95)00066-6.


Neuropeptide concentrations were determined in the postmortem cerebral cortex from 19 cognitive-impaired schizophrenics, 4 normal elderly subjects, 4 multi-infarct dementia (MID) cases, and 13 Alzheimer's disease (AD) patients. Only AD patients met criteria for AD. The normal elderly and MID cases were combined into one control group. Somatostatin concentrations were reduced in both schizophrenia and AD. Neuropeptide Y concentrations were reduced only in schizophrenia, and corticotropin-releasing hormone concentrations were primarily reduced in AD. Concentrations of vasoactive intestinal polypeptide and cholecystokinin also were reduced in schizophrenia, although not as profoundly as somatostatin or neuropeptide Y. In AD, cholecystokinin and vasoactive intestinal peptide were unchanged. Neuropeptide deficits in schizophrenics were more pronounced in the temporal and frontal lobes than in the occipital lobe. The mechanisms underlying these deficits in schizophrenia and AD are likely distinct. In schizophrenia, a common neural element, perhaps the cerebral cortical gaba-aminobutyric acid (GABA)-containing neuron, may underlie these deficits.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Alzheimer Disease / metabolism*
  • Autopsy
  • Case-Control Studies
  • Cerebral Cortex / metabolism*
  • Cholecystokinin / deficiency
  • Cognition*
  • Corticotropin-Releasing Hormone / deficiency
  • Dementia, Multi-Infarct / metabolism
  • Female
  • Frontal Lobe / metabolism
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Neuropeptides / deficiency*
  • Occipital Lobe / metabolism
  • Schizophrenia / metabolism*
  • Schizophrenic Psychology
  • Somatostatin / deficiency
  • Temporal Lobe / metabolism
  • Vasoactive Intestinal Peptide / deficiency


  • Neuropeptides
  • Vasoactive Intestinal Peptide
  • Somatostatin
  • Cholecystokinin
  • Corticotropin-Releasing Hormone