Factors Influencing the Deamination and Functional Activity of Biogenic Monoamines in the Central Nervous System

  • M. B. H. Youdim


In l86l Griesinger was one of the first to point out that disturbed function of the brain may be the underlying cause of mental disease. In his text book he stated that all mental disease must “necessarily and invariably” be due to an improper functioning of the brain cells (1861). Yet it is only comparatively recently that the challenge of the possible pathological and biochemical lesions in mental disease have been taken up by neurobiologists. However, in most cases no such lesion has been discovered. This does not mean that they do not exist, but merely indicates that we need further methodological techniques and knowledge to discover them. However, there has been a greater success in discovering drugs for use in the chemotherapy of affective disorders. It is of interest to note that some of the important psychoactive drugs used in the treatment of psychiatric disturbance were not discovered for their use in mental disease but were the result of accidents. To mention one, the first and still important anti-psychotic drug, chlorpromazine, was not envisaged as potentially valuable in the treatment of psychiatric disturbance (Courvoisier et al, 1953). Indeed, chlorpromazine was first used in psychiatric patients (Delay et al, 1952) only because it seemed to have a powerful effect on the central nervous system.


Monoamine Oxidase Covalent Adduct Biogenic Monoamine Mitochondrial Monoamine Oxidase Hyperactivity Syndrome 
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Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1977

Authors and Affiliations

  • M. B. H. Youdim
    • 1
  1. 1.University Department of Clinical PharmacologyRadcliffe InfirmaryOxfordUK

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