Calcium signalling and psychiatric disease: bipolar disorder and schizophrenia
Neurons have highly developed Ca2+ signalling systems responsible for regulating many neural functions such as the generation of brain rhythms, information processing and the changes in synaptic plasticity that underpins learning and memory. The signalling mechanisms that regulate neuronal excitability are particularly important for processes such as sensory perception, cognition and consciousness. The Ca2+ signalling pathway is a key component of the mechanisms responsible for regulating neuronal excitability, information processing and cognition. Alterations in gene transcription are particularly important as they result in subtle alterations in the neuronal signalling mechanisms that have been implicated in many neural diseases. In particular, dysregulation of the Ca2+ signalling pathway has been implicated in the development of some of the major psychiatric diseases such as bipolar disorder (BPD) and schizophrenia.