Dopamine receptor sensitivity in the hypothalamus of chronic schizophrenics after haloperidol therapy: Growth hormone and prolactin response to stimuli

F. Brambilla, L. Bellodi, F. Negri, E. Smeraldi, G. Malagoli

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


(1) The present investigation deals with a study of the hypothalamic dopamine-receptor sensitivity in schizophrenics, before and after haloperidol therapy, examined by investigation of basal GH and PRL levels and responses to an l-DOPA stimulation test. (2) Ten chronic schizophrenics, 8 males and 2 females, aged 27-53 yr, with a duration of illness from 4 to 32 yr, were studied after they were off therapy for at least 10 days. (3) The l-DOPA stimulation test was done at the beginning of the study and again 3 and 6 days after withdrawal of haloperidol which had been administered in increasing doses from 5 to 10 mg a day for 30 days. l-DOPA was given orally at a dose of 500 mg plus carbidopa 100 mg. (4) Patients were tested psychologically before and after haloperidol therapy by the Asberg Psychopathological Rating Scale and typed genetically for the HLA-SD system. (5) Basal prolactin levels before and after haloperidol therapy were low. GH secretion in response to l-DOPA was normal before haloperidol therapy. (6) After treatment the patients could be divided into two groups according to the HLA types; one group showing an increased response to the stimuli as compared with the other. The data are correlated with the psychological effectiveness of the therapy.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)329-339
Number of pages11
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1979



  • GH
  • haloperidol
  • PRL
  • receptor sensitivity
  • schizophrenia

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Endocrinology
  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Biological Psychiatry
  • Endocrine and Autonomic Systems
  • Psychology(all)

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