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Mitochondrial Dysfunction in the Pathophysiology of Bipolar Disorder: Effects of Pharmacotherapy

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Bipolar disorder is a common, chronic, and complex mental illness. Bipolar disorder is frequently comorbid with primary mitochondrial and metabolic disorders, and studies have implicated mitochondrial dysfunction in its pathophysiology. In the brains of people with bipolar disorder, high-energy phosphates are decreased, lactate is elevated and pH decreased, which together suggest a shift toward glycolysis for energy production. Furthermore, oxidative stress is increased, and calcium signalling dysregulated. Additionally there is downregulation of the expression of mitochondrial complexes, especially complex I. The therapeutic effects of some bipolar disorder drugs have recently been shown to be related to these mechanisms. In this review we will evaluate current research on the interactions between mitochondrial dysfunction and bipolar disorder pathology. We will then appraise the current literature describing the effects of bipolar disorder drugs on mitochondrial function, and discuss ramifications for future research.
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Keywords: Bipolar disorder; mitochondria; mood stabiliser; neuroprogression; oxidative stress

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 01 August 2015

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  • The aim of Mini-Reviews in Medicinal Chemistry is to publish short reviews on the important recent developments in medicinal chemistry and allied disciplines.

    The scope of Mini-Reviews in Medicinal Chemistry will cover all areas of medicinal chemistry including developments in rational drug design, synthetic chemistry, bioorganic chemistry, high-throughput screening, combinatorial chemistry, drug targets, and natural product research and structure-activity relationship studies.

    Mini-Reviews in Medicinal Chemistry is an essential journal for every medicinal and pharmaceutical chemist who wishes to be kept informed and up-to-date with the latest and most important developments.
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