Pre-conception inter-pregnancy interval and risk of schizophrenia

Gunawardana, L., Smith, G.D., Zammit, S., Whitley, E. , Gunnell, D., Lewis, S. and Rasmussen, F. (2011) Pre-conception inter-pregnancy interval and risk of schizophrenia. British Journal of Psychiatry, 199(4), pp. 338-339. (doi:10.1192/bjp.bp.111.092916)

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Abstract

It is hypothesised that the risk of schizophrenia may be elevated in children conceived following a short inter-pregnancy interval, when maternal folate stores are still being replenished. We examined the relationship between inter-pregnancy interval and schizophrenia risk in a longitudinal, population-based cohort. Risk of schizophrenia was increased by approximately 150% in those born following a pregnancy interval of ≤6 months, but was not increased if the interval after birth of the participant, before conception of the subsequent sibling, was ≤6 months. These findings support the hypothesis that folate (or other micronutrient) deficiency during fetal development may be an important risk factor for schizophrenia.

Item Type:Articles
Status:Published
Refereed:Yes
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Whitley, Dr Elise
Authors: Gunawardana, L., Smith, G.D., Zammit, S., Whitley, E., Gunnell, D., Lewis, S., and Rasmussen, F.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > Institute of Health and Wellbeing > MRC/CSO SPHSU
Journal Name:British Journal of Psychiatry
ISSN:0007-1250
ISSN (Online):1472-1465

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