Objective: Our recent microarray study detected decreases in the expression of phospholipase C beta 1 mRNA in the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex from subjects with schizophrenia at different stages of illness. Thus we aimed to validate and extend these findings. Method: We measured levels of mRNA and protein for phospholipase C beta 1 variant a and b using real-time PCR and western blot analysis, respectively, in the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex from subjects with schizophrenia, who had a short (< 7 years) or long (> 22 years) duration of illness. Results: Compared to age/sex matched controls, levels of phospholipase C beta 1 variant a and b mRNAs were decreased (-33% and -50%, respectively) in short duration schizophrenia. By contrast, only variant a mRNA was decreased (-24%) in long duration schizophrenia. There was no significant difference in the protein levels of either phospholipase C beta 1 variant in schizophrenia, irrespective of duration of illness (variant a; P = 0.84, variant b; P = 0.73). Conclusion: Our data confirm that phospholipase C beta 1 transcript levels are decreased in the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex from subjects with schizophrenia. However, the changes in levels of mRNA do not translate into a change at the level of protein. It is possible protein expression is regulated independently of mRNA and it remains to be determined whether there is a functional consequence of this change in mRNA relating to the pathophysiology of schizophrenia.
- dorsolateral prefrontal cortex
- phospholipase C beta 1 (PLC β?1)
- post-mortem brain tissue