Side effect profile of azathioprine in the treatment of chronic schizophrenic patients Academic Article uri icon


  • Schizophrenia Auto-immunity Azathioprine Platelet auto-antibodies Abstract Various findings suggest auto-immune changes in schizophrenia. We have recently demonstrated that platelets from schizophrenic patients bear auto-antibodies (PAA) which cross-react with brain antigens. Accordingly, treatment of schizophrenia with an immunosuppressant might be of potential benefit. In a recent case study, a chronic schizophrenic patient treated with azathioprine has demonstrated a clear psychiatric improvement preceded by a decrease in PAA level. A phase I study designed for assessing side-effects of short-term azathioprine treatment in a group of schizophrenic patients is described here. From a group of 40 chronic non-responsive patients, 14 patients demonstrating high PAA level have entered the study and 11 have complied all along. Two groups were tested in parallel. In the first (6 patients) 150 mg/day was …

publication date

  • January 1, 1997