Dopamine-β-Hydroxylase: Evidence for Increased Activity in Sympathetic Neurons during Psychotic States

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Science  30 Nov 1973:
Vol. 182, Issue 4115, pp. 923-924
DOI: 10.1126/science.182.4115.923


Tritiated dopamine was infused into psychiatric patients during acute psychotic episodes and in remission. An index of the activity of dopamine-β-hydroxylase of salivary gland sympathetic neurons was determined by measuring the distribution of tritiated metabolites in salivary fluid. Increased synthesis of norepinephrine occurred in acute schizophrenia and in the manic state of manic-depressive psychosis but not in the depressed phase.