March 1960

Further Evidence of a Plasma Factor in Schizophrenia

Author Affiliations

From the Lafayette Clinic and Wayne State University School of Medicine.

AMA Arch Gen Psychiatry. 1960;2(3):263-267. doi:10.1001/archpsyc.1960.03590090019004

The concept that a plasma factor may play a role in the etiology of schizophrenia has recently been studied by numerous investigators. For example, Heath and coworkers report the separation of a protein fraction from the blood of schizophrenic patients and state that this factor, when injected into nonschizophrenic subjects, produces many symptoms of schizophrenia.1 Hoffer, Osmond, and Smythies postulate that an unusual substance, formed from the oxidation of epinephrine, is present in the blood of patients with this disorder.2 These workers claim that oxidation products of epinephrine, when administered to normal subjects, cause the appearance of some of the symptoms of schizophrenia. Other workers report that the oxidation of epinephrine is more rapid in the plasma of schizophrenic patients than it is in that of control subjects.3 The work of Macht gives further evidence of the presence of an unusual plasma factor in

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