Original Articles

European Archives of Psychiatry and Clinical Neuroscience

, Volume 243, Issue 1, pp 7-10

First online:

Increased serum soluble interleukin-2 receptors in schizophrenic monozygotic twins

  • Mark Hyman RapaportAffiliated withDepartment of Psychiatry, University of California, San Diego School of MedicineThe Clinical Brain Disorders Branch of the Intramural Research Program, National Institute of Mental Health, St. Elisabeth HospitalThe Department of Psychiatry, University of PittsburghPsychiatric Service of the San Diego Veterans Affairs Medical CenterThe Clinical Therapeutics Branch, National Institute of Mental HealthThe Division of Intramural Research, National Institute of Mental Health
  • , E. Fuller TorreyAffiliated withDepartment of Psychiatry, University of California, San Diego School of MedicineThe Clinical Brain Disorders Branch of the Intramural Research Program, National Institute of Mental Health, St. Elisabeth HospitalThe Department of Psychiatry, University of PittsburghPsychiatric Service of the San Diego Veterans Affairs Medical CenterThe Clinical Therapeutics Branch, National Institute of Mental HealthThe Division of Intramural Research, National Institute of Mental Health
  • , Cathy G. McAllisterAffiliated withDepartment of Psychiatry, University of California, San Diego School of MedicineThe Clinical Brain Disorders Branch of the Intramural Research Program, National Institute of Mental Health, St. Elisabeth HospitalThe Department of Psychiatry, University of PittsburghPsychiatric Service of the San Diego Veterans Affairs Medical CenterThe Clinical Therapeutics Branch, National Institute of Mental HealthThe Division of Intramural Research, National Institute of Mental Health
  • , David L. NelsonAffiliated withDepartment of Psychiatry, University of California, San Diego School of MedicineThe Clinical Brain Disorders Branch of the Intramural Research Program, National Institute of Mental Health, St. Elisabeth HospitalThe Department of Psychiatry, University of PittsburghPsychiatric Service of the San Diego Veterans Affairs Medical CenterThe Clinical Therapeutics Branch, National Institute of Mental HealthThe Division of Intramural Research, National Institute of Mental Health
  • , David PickarAffiliated withDepartment of Psychiatry, University of California, San Diego School of MedicineThe Clinical Brain Disorders Branch of the Intramural Research Program, National Institute of Mental Health, St. Elisabeth HospitalThe Department of Psychiatry, University of PittsburghPsychiatric Service of the San Diego Veterans Affairs Medical CenterThe Clinical Therapeutics Branch, National Institute of Mental HealthThe Division of Intramural Research, National Institute of Mental Health
  • , Steven M. PaulAffiliated withDepartment of Psychiatry, University of California, San Diego School of MedicineThe Clinical Brain Disorders Branch of the Intramural Research Program, National Institute of Mental Health, St. Elisabeth HospitalThe Department of Psychiatry, University of PittsburghPsychiatric Service of the San Diego Veterans Affairs Medical CenterThe Clinical Therapeutics Branch, National Institute of Mental HealthThe Division of Intramural Research, National Institute of Mental Health

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Summary

There is a confusing history of immune findings associated with schizophrenia. At least some of these discrepant results may be artifacts caused by heterogeneity. In an attempt to decrease heterogeneity, we studied three groups of monozygotic twins who were either discordant for schizophrenia, concordant and ill, or concordant and well. This comparison minimizes environmental and genetic variance, and heightens differences that are actually due to the disorder. Overall, schizophrenic subjects had higher levels of serum soluble interleukin-2 receptors (SIL-2Rs) than unaffected individuals (480.8, SD 238.6 U/ml vs 380.9, SD 170.6 U/ml;F=5.256,df=1.61,P=0.02). When data from discordant and concordant twin groups were analysed separately, both the discordant ill twins (P=0.06) and concordant ill twin pairs (P=0.08) showed trends towards higher serum SIL-2R levels than their respective control groups. These data contribute to the growing body of evidence that immune activation is associated with some forms of schizophrenia.

Key words

Immunology Schizophrenia Twins Soluble interleukin-2 receptors