Schizophrenia, Mental Disintegration, and Melatonin
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Bleulerʼs concept of the splitting of the psychic functions in schizophrenia seems to be closely related to disturbances of neural binding related to perception, disorganized thoughts, and “blunted” or “flat” affects and suggests that disruptions of this coherent neural binding produce disintegration or splitting of consciousness. This abnormal integration of sensory input with stored information as a consequence of impaired neural circuits manifests as a failure of integrative brain functions. An important role in this process of the brain synchronization and integration likely plays temporal processes representing “internal clocks” which involve neurons localized in suprachiasmatic nuclei and also the pineal gland and other structures participating in neuroendocrine rhythmicity. The evidence also shows that melatonin is closely related to processes that contribute to memory formation, long-term potentiation, and synaptic plasticity mainly in the hippocampus and also in other brain regions. These findings also indicate that melatonin has very important and specific role in mechanisms of consciousness, in processes of memory consolidation, and also in their specific changes related to stress experiences which might be observed in various mental disorders. The growing evidence about these processes of temporal disorganization has been reported in schizophrenia which most likely may be understood in the modern conceptualization of schizophrenia that reminds its traditional conceptualization by Bleuler.
KeywordsEugen Bleuler Schizophrenia Melatonin Binding Mental disintegration Splitting of consciousness
This study was supported by Charles University Project SVV Progress.
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Conflict of Interest
The author declares that he has no conflict of interest.
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