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Test 'indicates those most at risk of schizophrenia'

Test 'indicates those most at risk of schizophrenia'
18th May 2011

A new test could identify which individuals are the most likely to develop schizophrenia in the future, which could leave them in need of respite care.

Research published in journal Biological Psychiatry studied the brain's response to commonly and rarely presented tones of different lengths.

When rare tones were played to healthy people, the brain generates an electrical wave called mismatch negativity (MMN) which can be picked up using electroencephalography (EEG).

However, people with schizophrenia have reduced MMN. This suggests those who a reduced MMN response could be more likely to go on to develop the condition.

Journal editor Dr John Krystal said: "This is exactly the type of initial step that we need to move toward clinically meaningful biological tests."

Meanwhile, a study published in journal BMC Medicine found that individuals with schizophrenia who are treated with L-lysine could enjoy some relief from their symptoms.

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