Pregnancy complications might turn on schizophrenia genes.
Looking at the genetic profiles and prenatal histories of nearly 4,000 adults from four countries, about half of which had been diagnosed with schizophrenia, a recent study found that a number of genes known to be associated with the disorder were likely to be turned on by pregnancy complications.
The latter included serious problems, such as pre-eclampsia, intrauterine growth restriction, and premature rupture of membranes.
Moreover, in high-risk patients, these complications came with a fivefold increase in the risk of developing the psychotic disorder.
Interestingly, males seemed to be more vulnerable than females to such prenatal stress factors.