Schizophrenia Disease Models
Schizophrenia is a chronic and severe mental disorder that affects approximately 1% of the population worldwide. It usually appears in early adulthood or late adolescence, and can often be a lifelong struggle, in terms of individual suffering as well as social impact.
Accumulated studies uncover that disruption in brain connectivity, driven primarily by a progressive reduction in dendritic spines on cortical pyramidal neurons, may represent a key triggering mechanism underlying schizophrenia pathophysiology. As shown in Figure 1, the excitatory activity of cortical pyramidal neurons (blue) is decreased in schizophrenia as a result of N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptor hypofunction. GABAergic interneurons (green), reduce excitatory input to neurons in the mesencephalon, because of interactions with inhibitory, which will further lead to increased dopamine activity in the striatum and decreased dopamine activity in the cortex (yellow).
Figure 1. Circuit model of neuronal changes relevant to schizophrenia. (Cannon, T.D, 2015)
Schizophrenia Disease Models and Tests at Creative Animodel
Animal models of schizophrenia at Creative Animodel serve for two main purposes. First, they may be heuristic, providing a framework in which to ask questions about etiology. Second, they may be predictive, i.e., used to test potential antipsychotic treatments, since animals and humans to a large extent share similar neuro-chemistries and neuro-circuitries of the brain. Our models include but are not limited to:
Model Characteristics and Pharmacology Evaluation
• Behavior measurement:
> Cognitive tests: impaired acquisition of the T-maze delayed alternation, Morris water maze (MWM), novel object recognition (NOR) test
> Sensorimotor assessment: prepulse inhibition (PPI), open field test
> Social interaction tests
• Whole brain cerebellar and hippocampal volume measured by high-field MRI.
• The behavioral characteristics of models include post-pubertal onset, loss of hippocampal and cortical connectivity and function, limbic dopamine dysregulation, cortical glutamatergic hypofunction, vulnerability to stress, abnormal response to reward, social withdrawal and cognitive impairment.
Figure 2. Animal model characteristics of schizophrenia. (Jones, C.A, 2011)
• A comprehensive model to meet your specific needs
• Advanced equipment (such as MRI and western blot) to produce reliable data
• Professional researchers to design and conduct stable cognitive tests
Creative Animodel is dedicated to creating the most reliable animal models of schizophrenia to promote the development of potential therapeutics in clinical studies. We are the best in scientific knowledge, expertise, data quality, flexibility and personal contacts. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact us.
1. Cannon, T.D. How Schizophrenia Develops: Cognitive and Brain Mechanisms Underlying Onset of Psychosis. Trends Cogn Sci. 2015, 19(12):744-56.
2. Hau, J; Schapiro, S.J. Handbook of Laboratory Animal Science, Volume II, Third Edition: Essential Principles and Practices. CRC Press. 2010.
3. Jones, C.A, Animal models of schizophrenia. British Journal of Pharmacology. 2011, 164(4): 1162-1194.