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Cell Tissue Res. 2018 May 16. doi: 10.1007/s00441-018-2849-3. [Epub ahead of print]

The hypothalamus and neuropsychiatric disorders: psychiatry meets microscopy.

Author information

1
Department of Psychiatry and Psychotherapy, Medical Faculty, University of Magdeburg, 39120, Magdeburg, Germany. Hans-Gert.Bernstein@med.ovgu.de.
2
Department of Psychiatry, Otto-von-Guericke University Magdeburg, Leipziger Str. 44, 39120, Magdeburg, Germany. Hans-Gert.Bernstein@med.ovgu.de.
3
Department of Psychiatry and Psychotherapy, Medical Faculty, University of Magdeburg, 39120, Magdeburg, Germany.
4
Institute of Biochemistry and Cell Biology, Medical Faculty, University of Magdeburg, 39120, Magdeburg, Germany.

Abstract

The past decades have witnessed an explosion of knowledge on brain structural abnormalities in schizophrenia and depression. Focusing on the hypothalamus, we try to show how postmortem brain microscopy has contributed to our understanding of mental disease-related pathologic alterations of this brain region. Gross anatomical abnormalities (volume changes of the third ventricle, the hypothalamus, and its nuclei) and alterations at the cellular level (loss of neurons, increased or decreased expression of hypothalamic peptides such as oxytocin, vasopressin, corticotropin-releasing hormone, and other regulatory factors as well as of enzymes involved in neurotransmitter and neuropeptide metabolism) have been reported in schizophrenia and/or depression. While histologic research has mainly concentrated on neurons, little is currently known about the impact of non-neuronal cells for hypothalamus pathology in mental disorders. Their study would be a rewarding task for the future.

KEYWORDS:

Depression; Histopathology; Hypothalamus; Neuropeptides; Schizophrenia

PMID:
29767278
DOI:
10.1007/s00441-018-2849-3

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