Objective: To investigate the levels of serum cortisol, dehydroepiandrosterone sulfate (DHEA-S), nitric oxide (NO) and adrenomedullin (AM) in schizophrenic patients. Subjects and Methods: Sixty-six male patients with chronic schizophrenia and 28 normal male subjects participated in this study. The duration of disease was 145 ± 120 (mean ± SD) months. Serum levels of cortisol and DHEA-S were measured by electrochemiluminescence; plasma nitrite levels as an index of NO were measured with the Griess reaction, while plasma AM concentration was measured by using high-performance liquid chromatography. Results: Patients (12.48 ± 3.2 µg/dl), as compared to controls (10.31 ± 3.1 µg/dl), had higher levels of baseline cortisol (p < 0.05). DHEA-S levels were lower in patients though this did not reach statistical significance (302 ± 156 µg/dl compared to control, 322 ± 96 µg/dl, p > 0.05). The mean levels of plasma AM and NO in the schizophrenic group (44.33 ± 5.07 pmol/l and 36.27 ± 17.6 µmol/l) were significantly higher than the levels in the control group (14.56 ± 4.03 pmol/l and 32.54 ± 7.14 µmol/l; p < 0.001, p < 0.03, respectively). There was a positive association between duration of disease and cortisol/DHEA-S ratio and cortisol level. Conclusion: The data show that schizophrenia is associated with abnormal levels of cortisol, DHEA-S, NO and AM.

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