Schizophrenia Model

Schizophrenia is a mental disorder characterized by both positive and negative symptoms that impair the mental function of the affected individual. Positive symptoms typically include paranoia, hallucinations and delusions, and are usually treatable. Negative symptoms include asociality (lack of, or reduced, social interaction) and cognitive impairment and are largely untreatable with current drug therapy. As such, there is a clear unmet clinical need for medications that are active and effective against the negative symptoms of schizophrenia.

Charles River has validated a pencyclidine (PCP)-induced deficit model which recapitulates several behavioral deficits, mimicking the symptoms of schizophrenia. This model displays both positive and negative symptoms, including cognitive deficits, and facilitates the development of drugs for either symptom category or in combination.

Prepulse inhibition of startle is a neurophysiological and behavioral measure of sensorimotor gating. A weaker prestimulus (prepulse) inhibits the reaction of an animal to a subsequent strong startling stimulus (pulse). Abnormal sensory inhibition may reflect a deficit in processing incoming sensory information. Such deficits are often observed in patients suffering from illnesses like schizophrenia. 

Charles River uses a schizophrenia model of PCP-induced impairment of Prepulse Inhibition (PPI) of startle. An antipsychotic drug is typically capable of partly reversing the PPI impairment.

The key cognitive tests for efficacy of a substance on negative schizophrenia symptoms are the Morris Water Maze (MWM) and the Novel Object Recognition (NOR) test, in which PCP-induced cognitive decline in rats is reversed with an antipsychotic.

You may also be interested in...

Schizophrenia Modeling Technical Sheet

Learn about our validated preclinical in vivo model for the study of compounds and therapies aimed at combating the cognitive and negative symptoms of schizophrenia.

Imaging Services

Our range of imaging modalities can dramatically increase the efficiency and significantly enhance the value of your study.

Biomarker Services

We can support your drug discovery pipeline by providing biomarker analysis in a non-GxP environment.