Research Article| Volume 23, ISSUE 8, P769-775, April 15, 1988

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The expression of an N-CAM serum fragment is positively correlated with severity of negative features in type II schizophrenia

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      The expression of a 70-kD serum fragment of the neural cell adhesion molecule (N-CAM) in schizophrenia is described. Schizophrenic patients (n = 40) were found to have statistically significant increases (p < 0.0001) in serum N-CAM levels when compared to normal individuals (n = 26), and this could not be associated with age or sex. This difference was more marked (p < 0.0001) between type II schizophrenics (n = 13) and normal individuals (n = 26) than when patients in the overlap group between type I and type II schizophrenia (n = 18) were compared to normal individuals (p < 0.001). This difference remained significant (p < 0.01) when overlap patients were compared to those of type II schizophrenia. Furthermore, schizophrenic patients with lower serum N-CAM proved to be better responders to neuraleptic therapy. We suggest that these elevated serum N-CAM levels reflect an increased synaptic turnover rate in this psychotic state.
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