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A possible role for sarcosine in the management of schizophrenia

  • David Curtis (a1)

Summary

Sarcosine, which is freely sold as a dietary supplement, has pharmacological activity to boost functioning of the glutamatergic N-methyl-d-aspartate receptor (NMDAR) and hence it is a biologically rational treatment for schizophrenia. The small number of studies carried out to date provide some evidence for its efficacy and psychiatrists could consider suggesting its use to their patients.

Declaration of interest

D.C. is involved in schizophrenia-related genetics research that implicates the same system as is targeted by sarcosine.

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References

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1Balu, DT. The NMDA receptor and schizophrenia: from pathophysiology to treatment. Adv Pharmacol 2016; 76: 351–82.
2Tsavou, A, Curtis, D. In-silico investigation of coding variants potentially affecting the functioning of the glutamatergic N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor in schizophrenia. Psychiatr Genet 2019: 29: 4450.
3Bugarski-Kirola, D, Wang, A, Abi-Saab, D, et al. A phase II/III trial of bitopertin monotherapy compared with placebo in patients with an acute exacerbation of schizophrenia – Results from the CandleLyte study. Eur Neuropsychopharmacol 2014; 24: 1024–36.
4Herdon, HJ, Godfrey, FM, Brown, AM, et al. Pharmacological assessment of the role of the glycine transporter GlyT-1 in mediating high-affinity glycine uptake by rat cerebral cortex and cerebellum synaptosomes. Neuropharmacology 2001; 41: 8896.
5Strzelecki, D, Urban-Kowalczyk, M, Wysokiński, A. Serum levels of TNF-alpha in patients with chronic schizophrenia during treatment augmentation with sarcosine (results of the PULSAR study). Psychiatry Res 2018; 268: 447–53.

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A possible role for sarcosine in the management of schizophrenia

  • David Curtis (a1)
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