London: New biosensors developed by researchers from the University of California, San Diego have successfully shown how a popular class of drugs used to treat schizophrenia works.The biosensors have revealed previously hidden components of chemical communication in the brain.
The team implanted the cells, which they call CNiFERs (pronounced "sniffers"), in rat brains, then stimulated a deeper part of the brain in a way known to release acetylcholine nearby. They saw a colour change, evidence that the CNiFERs were working. Then they gave the rats one of two atypical neuroleptics. In both cases, the drug severely depressed the response, indicating that the drugs`` receptor-blocking action overrides the increase in acetylcholine.The findings are reported online in Nature Neuroscience. ANI