Psychopharmacological treatments for schizophrenia have always been a matter of debate
and a very important issue in public health given the chronic, relapsing and disabling nature of the
disorder. A thorough understanding of the pros and cons of currently available pharmacological treatments
for schizophrenia is critical to better capture the features of treatment-refractory clinical pictures and
plan the developing of new treatment strategies. This review focuses on brain functional changes induced
by antipsychotic drugs as assessed by modern functional neuroimaging techniques (i.e. fMRI, PET,
SPECT, MRI spectroscopy). The most important papers on this topic are reviewed in order to draw an
ideal map of the main functional changes occurring in the brain during antipsychotic treatment. This supports the hypothesis
that a network-based perspective and a functional connectivity approach are needed to fill the currently existing gap of
knowledge in the field of psychotropic drugs and their mechanisms of action beyond neurotransmitter systems.
Keywords: Antipsychotic drugs, functional neuroimaging, network, psychopharmacology, schizophrenia, treatment.
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