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CNS & Neurological Disorders - Drug Targets


ISSN (Print): 1871-5273
ISSN (Online): 1996-3181

General Review Article

Prospects for Neurotrophic Factor-Based Early Intervention in Schizophrenia: Lessons Learned from the Effects of Antipsychotic Drugs on Cognition, Neurogenesis, and Neurotrophic Factors

Author(s): Mohammad M. Khan* and Vinay Parikh*

Volume 22, Issue 2, 2023

Published on: 27 May, 2022

Page: [289 - 303] Pages: 15

DOI: 10.2174/1871527321666220401124151

Price: $65


Although reducing psychotic symptoms in schizophrenia has been a major focus of therapeutic interventions for decades, improving cognition is considered a better predictor of functional outcomes. However, the most commonly prescribed antipsychotic drugs (APDs) show only marginal beneficial effects on cognition in patients with schizophrenia. The neural mechanisms underlying cognitive disturbances in schizophrenia remain unknown that making drug development efforts very challenging. Since neurotrophic factors are the primary architects of neurogenesis, synaptic plasticity, learning, and memory, the findings from preclinical and clinical studies that assess changes in neurogenesis and neurotrophic factors and their relationship to cognitive performance in schizophrenia, and how these mechanisms might be impacted by APD treatment, may provide valuable clues in developing therapies to combat cognitive deficit in schizophrenia. Numerous evidence produced over the years suggests a deficit in a wide spectrum of neurotrophic factors in schizophrenia. Since schizophrenia is considered a neurodevelopmental disorder, early intervention with neurotrophic factors may be more effective in ameliorating the cognitive deficits and psychopathological symptoms associated with this pathology. In this context, results from initial clinical trials with neurotrophic factors and their future potential to improve cognition and psychosocial functioning in schizophrenia are discussed.

Keywords: Antipsychotic drugs, neurogenesis, cognition, neurotrophic factors, early intervention, schizophrenia.

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