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J Clin Psychiatry. 2014;75 Suppl 1:21-6. doi: 10.4088/JCP.13049su1c.04.

Unmet needs in the treatment of schizophrenia: new targets to help different symptom domains.

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Current treatments for schizophrenia, although effective for positive symptoms, have not proven as effective for negative symptoms and cognitive dysfunction. Additional strategies, such as combining antipsychotics or adding adjunctive agents to antipsychotics, have also yielded disappointing results in both negative and cognitive symptom domains. However, the N-methyl-d-aspartate (NMDA) receptor hypofunction hypothesis, with its focus on the glutamate system's effect on dopamine, can explain the positive, negative, and cognitive symptoms in schizophrenia. Therapeutic targets are being explored that focus on NMDA receptors (eg, glycine, d-serine), glycine reuptake inhibition (such as sarcosine and bitopertin), and, through a different pathway, α-7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor agonism (eg, encenicline).

© Copyright 2014 Physicians Postgraduate Press, Inc.

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