22. Animal Models of Schizophrenia

  1. Daniel R. Weinberger MD3 and
  2. Paul J. Harrison MA, BM, BCh, DM(Oxon), FRCPsych4
  1. Barbara K. Lipska PhD1 and
  2. Joseph A. Gogos MD, PhD2

Published Online: 8 MAR 2011

DOI: 10.1002/9781444327298.ch22

Schizophrenia, Third Edition

Schizophrenia, Third Edition

How to Cite

Lipska, B. K. and Gogos, J. A. (2010) Animal Models of Schizophrenia, in Schizophrenia, Third Edition (eds D. R. Weinberger and P. J. Harrison), Wiley-Blackwell, Oxford, UK. doi: 10.1002/9781444327298.ch22

Editor Information

  1. 3

    Genes, Cognition and Psychosis Program, Clinical Studies Section, Clinical Brain Disorders Branch, National Institute of Health, Bethesda, MD, USA

  2. 4

    Department of Psychiatry, University of Oxford, Warneford Hospital, Oxford, UK

Author Information

  1. 1

    National Institute of Mental Health, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, MD, USA

  2. 2

    Department of Physiology and Department of Neuroscience, Columbia University Medical School, New York, NY USA

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 8 MAR 2011
  2. Published Print: 10 DEC 2010

ISBN Information

Print ISBN: 9781405176972

Online ISBN: 9781444327298



  • animal models of schizophrenia;
  • animal models of schizophrenia - phenomena linked to dopamine;
  • drugs, that have emerged - exerting antidopaminergic efficacy;
  • novel approaches to modeling schizophrenia;
  • neurodevelopmental models - models testing etiological theories;
  • perinatal stress models - consequences of stress for brain development, shaping adult behavioral responses;
  • genetic architecture of complex psychiatric disorders - as schizophrenia;
  • DISC1, susceptibility gene for major mental illness - through a balanced chromosomal translocation;
  • heterozygous DGCR8-deficient mice - showing deficits in a working memory-dependent learning task


Animal models are important in exploring the mechanisms underlying a human disease and designing new therapies. Schizophrenia is an example of a particularly formidable challenge for animal modeling. It is a complex disorder of unknown origin, characterized by abnormalities of uniquely human behaviors in the realms of perception, thinking, and the experience of emotions, and whose onset is virtually restricted to young adulthood. Recent new evidence about the neurobiology of the condition has generated new avenues of animal research. In this chapter, we present recent achievements in modeling the neurobiology of schizophrenia in animals, consider limitations inherent in any heuristic animal model of psychiatric disorders, and discuss the usefulness of a new generation of animal models for testing particular hypotheses about etiology and pathophysiology of schizophrenia.