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Altered serum levels of interleukin-3 in first-episode drug-naive and chronic medicated schizophrenia.

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      Abstract

      Elevated serum levels of Interleukin-3 (IL-3), a major component of the cytokines, have been observed in chronic and medicated patients with schizophrenia, but this elevation may reflect either or both medication and illness chronicity effects. Thus, we compared serum IL-3 levels in first-episode drug-naive (FEDN) to chronic medicated patients with schizophrenia and examined the association of IL-3 with their psychopathological symptoms. Serum IL-3 levels were assessed in 55 FEDN patients, 52 chronic medicated patients and 43 healthy controls. Schizophrenia symptomatology was assessed with the Positive and Negative Syndrome Scale (PANSS). Serum IL-3 levels were measured by sandwich enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). We found significantly lower IL-3 levels in FEDN patients than both chronic patients and healthy controls (both p<0.001), while IL-3 levels in chronic patients were markedly higher than in healthy controls. No significant association was observed between IL-3 and any clinical psychopathology in FEDN patients; however, we found a significant correlation between serum IL-3 levels and the PANSS general psychopathology subscore in chronic medicated patients (p<0.05). Decreased IL-3 levels in FEDN patients suggest that suppressed immune function may be associated with developing schizophrenia, but as the disease progresses IL-3 levels increase perhaps related to medication treatment or other factors that occur during chronic illness.

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      Affiliations
      [1 ] Wenzhou Medical University, Wenzhou, Zhejiang, China.
      [2 ] Lucheng Psychiatric Hospital, Wenzhou, Zhejiang, China.
      [3 ] Wenzhou Medical University, Wenzhou, Zhejiang, China; Beijing HuiLongGuan Hospital, Peking University, Beijing, China.
      [4 ] Kangning Hospital, Wenzhou Medical University, Wenzhou, Zhejiang, China.
      [5 ] School of Medicine, University of Wollongong, Australia; Illawarra Health and Medical Research Institute (IHMRI), Australia.
      [6 ] Beijing HuiLongGuan Hospital, Peking University, Beijing, China.
      [7 ] Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston, Houston, TX, USA.
      [8 ] Wenzhou Medical University, Wenzhou, Zhejiang, China. Electronic address: tangwj011@163.com.
      [9 ] Beijing HuiLongGuan Hospital, Peking University, Beijing, China; Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston, Houston, TX, USA. Electronic address: zhangxy9@gmail.com.
      Journal
      Schizophr. Res.
      Schizophrenia research
      Elsevier BV
      1573-2509
      0920-9964
      October 2016
      : 176
      : 2-3
      27237600
      S0920-9964(16)30232-8
      10.1016/j.schres.2016.05.010

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