This article is part of the Research Topic Salience and dopamine: implications for psychiatry.

Review ARTICLE

Front. Behav. Neurosci., 17 January 2011 | doi: 10.3389/fnbeh.2011.00001

Drug-induced psychosis: how to avoid star gazing in schizophrenia research by looking at more obvious sources of light

  • Division of Psychological Medicine, Institute of Psychiatry, King’s College London, London, UK

The prevalent view today is that schizophrenia is a syndrome rather than a specific disease. Liability to schizophrenia is highly heritable. It appears that multiple genetic and environmental factors operate together to push individuals over a threshold into expressing the characteristic clinical picture. One environmental factor which has been curiously neglected is the evidence that certain drugs can induce schizophrenia-like psychosis. In the last 60 years, improved understanding of the relationship between drug abuse and psychosis has contributed substantially to our modern view of the disorder suggesting that liability to psychosis in general, and to schizophrenia in particular, is distributed trough the general population in a similar continuous way to liability to medical disorders such as hypertension and diabetes. In this review we examine the main hypotheses resulting from the link observed between the most common psychotomimetic drugs (lysergic acid diethylamide, amphetamines, cannabis, phencyclidine) and schizophrenia.

Keywords: LSD, schizophrenia, amphetamines, psychosis, cannabis, PCP

Citation: Paparelli A, Di Forti M, Morrison PD and Murray RM (2011) Drug-induced psychosis: how to avoid star gazing in schizophrenia research by looking at more obvious sources of light. Front. Behav. Neurosci. 5:1. doi: 10.3389/fnbeh.2011.00001

Received: 01 March 2010; Paper pending published: 19 October 2010;
Accepted: 02 January 2011; Published online: 17 January 2011.

Edited by:

Andreas Meyer-Lindenberg, Central Institute of Mental Health, Germany

Reviewed by:

Andreas Meyer-Lindenberg, Central Institute of Mental Health, Germany
Joshua W. Buckholtz, Vanderbilt University, USA
Markus Leweke, Central Institute of Mental Health, Germany

Copyright: © 2011 Paparelli, Di Forti, Morrison and Murray. This is an open-access article subject to an exclusive license agreement between the authors and the Frontiers Research Foundation, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original authors and source are credited.

*Correspondence: Alessandra Paparelli, Institute of Psychiatry, King’s College London, De Crespigny Park, London SE5 8AF, UK. e-mail: alessandra.a.paparelli@kcl.ac.uk

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