Increasing evidence links genomic and epigenomic instability, including multiple fragile sites regions to neuropsychiatric diseases including schizophrenia and autism. Cancer is the only other disease associated with multiple fragile site regions, and genome and epigenomic instability is a characteristic of cancer. Research on cancer is far more advanced than research on neuropsychiatric disease; hence, insight into neuropsychiatric disease may be derived from cancer research results. Towards this end, this article will review the evidence linking schizophrenia and other neuropsychiatric diseases (especially autism) to genomic and epigenomic instability, and fragile sites. The results of studies on genetic, epigenetic and environmental components of schizophrenia and autism point to the importance of the folate-methioninetransulfuration metabolic hub that is diseases also perturbed in cancer. The idea that the folate-methionine-transulfuration hub is important in neuropsychiatric is exciting because this hub present novel targets for drug development, suggests some drugs used in cancer may be useful in neuropsychiatric disease, and raises the possibility that nutrition interventions may influence the severity, presentation, or dynamics of disease.
Keywords: Genomic and epigenomic instability, fragile sites, schizophrenia, autism, folate, methionine, transulfuration, s-adenosyl methionine, cancer
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