Same Mechanism Possible for Psychosis in Schizophrenia and Epilepsy

October 6, 2011

Increased activity of the enzyme phospholipase A2 (PLA2) has been documented in schizophrenia and is now reported to occur in patients with temporal lobe epilepsy . . .

Increased activity of the enzyme phospholipase A2 (PLA2) has been documented in schizophrenia and is now reported to occur in patients with temporal lobe epilepsy who have exhibited schizophrenia-like psychosis.1

The increment in brain PLA2 activity in these patients relative to those with other forms of epilepsy without psychotic symptoms suggests the condition is common to psychotic symptoms independent of disease diagnosis, researchers indicate in their report in the Journal of Psychiatric Research,1 posted on line in August.

The group had access to hippocampal tissue from temporal lobectomy in patients with treatment resistant temporal lobe epilepsy secondary to medial temporal sclerosis. A significantly higher PLA2 activity was found in 7 patients with psychotic symptoms than in 9 without psychosis.

Citing other research that has identified greater PLA2 activity in bipolar patients with psychosis than without, the investigators comment, “Taken together, the present findings and those from other laboratories suggest that increased PLA2 activity is not specific for schizophrenia, but may be more broadly related to the onset of psychiatric symptoms in general.”

Reference

1. Gattaz WF, Valente KD, Raposo NRB, et al. Increased PLA(2) activity in the hippocampus of patients with temporal lobe epilepsy and psychosis. J Psychiatr Res. doi:10.1016/j.jpsychires.2011.07.005 [Epub ahead of print]. Accessed October 1, 2011.