Saturday, February 14, 2004
Researchers seem to have found a link between lead exposure (from leaded gasoline) and schizophrenia. This will have the immediate effect of furthering the push to ban leaded gas worldwide, but may not really be such a big deal in terms of schizophrenia research (an area in which I worked for a few years): there are tons of things linked to schizophrenia, including genetics, virus infections, and traumatic events. Inhaled pollution (i.e., smog) was in fact already one of those things. It would be nice if a key ingredient in said smog were identified, but the thing about schizophrenia is: there's almost certainly more than one cause. This is a disease so ridiculously complicated we don't know, as the article mentions, whether it's even a disease or if it's a number of diseases.
But it's cool nonetheless.
Suicide prevention could be said to be the basic goal of clinical psychology. I'm not sure how meaningful this study is, but it's certainly interesting. Seeing how governments might generalize the finding to other events could get bizarre, though.