Development of a Blood Based Molecular Test to Aid in the Diagnosis of Schizophrenia



December 14, 2011

Schizophrenia almost certainly presents a heterogeneous group of aetiologies which may not be reflected in the symptomatic/clinical presentation of patients. Therefore, a better molecular understanding of the disease onset and progression is urgently needed. Recently, we have identified a candidate biomarker panel in patient serum, specifically up-or down-regulated in drug naive, first onset schizophrenia patients compared to healthy controls using high throughput proteomic profiling and multiplexed immunoassay profiling technology. A panel of 51 markers was found to yield an average sensitivity and specificity of >85% across five clinical centres comprising 572 first-onset drug-naive and recent onset schizophrenia patients versus 235 matched healthy control samples. Abnormalities remained significant after adjustment for all recorded baseline characteristics. These 51 immunoassays and the associated decision rule delivered a sensitive and specific prediction for the presence of schizophrenia in patients compared to matched healthy controls.

Flow Chemistry

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