An international partnership helped the team of Prof. Marie-Odile Krebs (INSERM, Paris Descartes University) to identify 22 plasma biomarkers that predict the risk of psychosis in individuals at risk (analyses conducted at Cambridge).
What you should know : Psychotic disorders that arise in adolescence and early adulthood are the third cause of disability in adults.
What we knew : certain clinical criteria can be used to identify subjects at "ultra high risk" of psychosis (about 1/3 will experience a psychotic episode within a period of two years). It is now possible to propose early action to prevent the emergence of a psychosis or limit its complications.
What we have learned : For the first time, biomarkers measured on a single sample taken at the beginning of treatment, before clinical analysis, make it possible to correctly identify almost all individuals who will develop schizophrenia as patients at ultra-high risk. This was accomplished in a study conducted at Sainte-Anne Hospital in Paris.
Furthermore, the molecules identified are mostly implicated in neuroplasticity processes, reinforcing the idea that some neuroprotective therapies could be effective strategies at this specific stage.
What this changes : This article identifies a panel of biomarkers that show more than 90% predictive accuracy. This is a major advance in the prevention of psychosis. Improving the prediction of risk of emergence of psychotic disorders in adolescence or early adulthood is essential to better target the people who should benefit from prevention programs and opens the door to possible specific treatment.
Chan MK, MO Krebs, Cox D, Guest PC, Yolken RH, Rahmoune H, Rothermundt M, Steiner J, Leweke FM, van Beveren NJM, Niebuhr DW, Weber NS, Cowan DN, Suarez-Pinilla P, Crespo-Facorro B, Mam-Lam-Fook C, Bourgin J, Wenstrup RJ, Kaldate RR, Cooper JD, Bahn S (2015) Development of a blood-based molecular biomarker test for identification of schizophrenia prior to disease onset, Translational Psychiatry.
Source: Translational Psychiatry