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The Origins of Schizophrenia$
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Alan Brown and Paul Patterson

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780231151245

Published to Columbia Scholarship Online: November 2015

DOI: 10.7312/columbia/9780231151245.001.0001

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Developmental Vitamin D Deficiency as a Risk Factor for Schizophrenia

Developmental Vitamin D Deficiency as a Risk Factor for Schizophrenia

(p.282) Chapter 11 Developmental Vitamin D Deficiency as a Risk Factor for Schizophrenia
The Origins of Schizophrenia

Xiaoying Cui

Darryl W. Eyles

Thomas H. J. Burne

John J. Mcgrath

Columbia University Press

This chapter discusses developmental vitamin D (DVD) deficiency as a potential risk factor for schizophrenia. Over the last decade, evidence has accumulated demonstrating that vitamin D plays an important role in brain development; hence, vitamin D deficiency may result in a higher risk for schizophrenia. Scientist conducted an experiment on rats to demonstrate how DVD deficiency can alter neurobiological features, which are consistent with that of schizophrenia. The finding shows that DVD deficient rats had cerebral hemispheres that were longer but not wider than common rats, and increased mitosis across the embryonic brain. These results suggest that vitamin D exerts a pro-differentiation and pro-apoptotic function in the developing brain. The altered brain size and shape in DVD-deficient rats may be the result of the disrupted normal progression of brain cells.

Keywords:   developmental vitamin D deficiency, schizophrenia, cerebral hemispheres, rats

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