Scientists believe they have found the driving issue behind childhood-onset schizophrenia. The brain's glial cells ensure communication between neurons, and scientists studying a possible cause of childhood-onset schizophrenia say that the culprit could be dysfunction in these glial cells. The scientists, who have published their new findings in the journal Cell, say that genetic defects might be the cause of the dysfunction in the brain's glial cells.
Medical News Today reports that more than 21 million people on earth are living with schizophrenia and that the National Institute of Mental Health estimates more than one percent of adults in the United States are affected by schizophrenia. The new research was led by neurologist Dr. Goldman. Goldman works at the University of Rochester Medical Center and says that dysfunction in the brain's glial cells are likely the cause of childhood-onset schizophrenia.
Glial cells make up the supportive tissue in the brain, Medical News Today reports. Their primary function is believed to be to facilitate communication between neurons, including neurons in the peripheral nervous system, not just the central nervous system.