School of Psychiatry, University of New South Wales, Sydney, Australia; Schizophrenia Research Laboratory, Neuroscience Research Australia, Sydney, Australia; Department of Neuroscience and Physiology, State University of New York Upstate Medical University, Syracuse, NY, USA. Electronic address: [Email]
Brain-Derived Neurotrophic Factor (BDNF) acts as a critical regulator of synaptogenesis and synaptic plasticity. Sex differences have been demonstrated in many aspects of schizophrenia. This study tested for sex-specific differences in peripheral BDNF levels in people with schizophrenia and healthy controls. We measured circulating plasma BDNF levels in 95 people with schizophrenia and 80 healthy controls. Plasma BDNF levels were significantly elevated in females with schizophrenia compared to males with schizophrenia and to female healthy controls. These results suggest that sex differences in peripheral BDNF levels may contribute to other sex related differences in schizophrenia.