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Article
January 1979

Some Observations on the Opiate Peptides and Schizophrenia

Author Affiliations

From the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, the Nancy Pritzker Laboratory of Behavioral Neurochemistry, Stanford University School of Medicine, Stanford, Calif. Drs Watson and Akil are now with the Mental Health Research Institute at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor.

Arch Gen Psychiatry. 1979;36(1):35-41. doi:10.1001/archpsyc.1979.01780010041004
Abstract

• With the discovery of the opiate peptides, several major avenues of research became apparent. These peptides produced a great deal of focused attention on their anatomy, biochemistry, and physiology. In this article, we present an overview of some of the main research issues and recent findings in the field of opiate peptides. The possible relationship of the opiate peptide neuronal systems to schizophrenia is discussed in light of attempts to alter schizophrenic symptoms with opiate antagonists, β-endorphin, and dialysis. It is hypothesized that if the opiate peptides are involved in schizophrenia, then their involvement with dopamine systems and/or with stress responses may be critical.

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