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Abstract #3151

Proton MRS at 3 tesla in brain of schizophrenic patients: elevated glutamate and reduced NAA in hippocampus

Schubert F, Seifert F, Gallinat J, Krebs M, Leopold K, Schaefer M
Physikalisch-Technische Bundesanstalt

Continuing interest in the role of glutamate in schizophrenia prompted us to perform proton MRS in the brain of schizophrenic patients (n=18) and controls (n=30), focusing on quantitation of glutamate and NAA. Press spectra were acquired from the left hippocampus (HC), anterior cingulate and posterior cingulate. Only in the HC glutamate concentration was significantly higher and NAA concentration significantly lower in patients than in controls. The results confirm a recently reported glutamate increase in hippocampus which, parallelled by reduced NAA suggests dysfunctional glutamatergic neurotransmission with concomitant disturbed neuronal integrity in a key region for the pathophysiology of schizophrenia.