AMPA receptor binding and subunit mRNA expression in prefrontal cortex and striatum of elderly schizophrenics

Daniel J. Healy*, Vahram Haroutunian, Peter Powchik, Michael Davidson, Kenneth L. Davis, Stanley J. Watson, James H. Meador-Woodruff

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The dopamine hypothesis of schizophrenia has recently evolved into a model of dysfunctional integration between cortical and subcortical dopaminergic activity. Anatomical data suggest that regional alterations in dopaminergic activity may be linked by means of the rich glutamatergic innervation of the striatum by corticostriatal projections, suggesting a potential role for glutamatergic dysfunction in schizophrenia. Although pharmacological data have implicated the NMDA subtype of glutamate receptor in this illness, disturbance in AMPA receptor expression could potentially lead to the NMDA receptor hypoactivity hypothesized in schizophrenia. To address this possibility, we examined AMPA receptor binding and subunit mRNA levels in prefrontal cortex and striatum of schizophrenics and matched controls. There were no significant differences in AMPA receptor binding or subunit mRNA levels in either prefrontal cortical or striatal regions of schizophrenics. Furthermore, AMPA receptor expression did not seem to be regulated by chronic antipsychotic drug exposure, when neuroleptic treated and drug-free schizophrenics were analyzed separately. These data do not support a role for altered AMPA receptor expression in cortex and striatum in schizophrenia. Copyright (C) 1998 American College of Neuropsychopharmacology.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)278-286
Number of pages9
Issue number4
StatePublished - Oct 1998
Externally publishedYes


FundersFunder number
Department of Psychiatry
Mental Health Research Institute at the University of Michigan
Veterans AdministrationMH42251, AG2219, MH45212, MH15794
National Institute of Mental HealthR01MH053327
National Institute on AgingP50AG005138
Stanley Foundation


    • Glutamate
    • In situ hybridization
    • NMDA
    • Postmortem
    • Receptor autoradiography


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