DNA methylation in psychosis: Insights into etiology and treatment


Evidence for involvement of DNA methylation in psychosis forms the focus of this perspective. Of interest are results from two independent sets of experiments including rats treated with antipsychotic drugs and monozygotic twins discordant for schizophrenia. The results show that DNA methylation is increased in rats treated with antipsychotic drugs, reflecting the global effect of the drugs. Some of these changes are also seen in affected schizophrenic twins that were treated with antipsychotics. The genes and pathways identified in the unrelated experiments are relevant to neurodevelopment and psychiatric disorders. The common cause is hypothesized to be aberrations resulting from medication use. However, this needs to be established by future studies that address the origin of methylation changes in psychosis.