A theory has emerged that points to the Epstein-Barr virus as a potential cause of cognitive dysfunction in patients with schizophrenia. Dr. Ileana Berman discusses the recently published theory:
An estimated 90% of the population will be infected with Epstein-Barr virus at some point in their lives. For the most part, EBV has no effect on the infected individual at all. Most patients present as asymptomatic at the time of infection and may never realize that they’ve been infected with the virus.
But over the years, research has suggested that the impact of EBV on an infected person is lifelong. For example, it is now accepted that positive EBV status can lead to and cause contraction of numerous illnesses, including infectious mononucleosis. Now, new research published and discussed by Brian Miller, MD, is pointing to the development of a theory that EBV infection could be to blame for cognitive dysfunction in schizophrenic individuals. As the conversation opens up on this matter, Dr. Ileana Berman is certainly interested in diving deeper into the emerging theory.