Leukocyte telomere length in Hispanic schizophrenia patients under treatment with olanzapine

Nancy Monroy-Jaramillo, Yaneth Rodríguez-Agudelo, Luis Carlos Aviña-Cervantes, David Roberts, Dawn I Velligan, Consuelo Walss-Bass

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


Different lines of evidence indicate that patients with schizophrenia (SZ) exhibit accelerated aging. Leukocyte telomere length (TL), an aging marker, is associated with age-related and chronic pathologies, including schizophrenia. We analyzed leukocyte TL in 170 SZ patients of Hispanic ancestry grouped based on antipsychotic treatment, compared to 126 matched controls. The group under treatment with atypical antipsychotics was further subdivided according to the risk of medication to cause metabolic syndrome (MetS). Our results show significant erosion in the TL of SZ patients under treatment with the atypical antipsychotics clozapine and olanzapine, which cause high-risk for MetS, compared to healthy controls and patients under treatment with medium and low-risk antipsychotics. However, when the analysis was done separately for clozapine and olanzapine, a significant difference remained only for olanzapine. These findings suggest that atypical antipsychotics that cause high-risk for MetS, particularly olanzapine, may modulate leukocyte TL in SZ patients. Future research is required to elucidate if in fact atypical antipsychotics are involved in TL maintenance in SZ subjects and the mechanism by which this occurs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)26-30
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Psychiatric Research
StatePublished - Jul 1 2017


  • Atypical antipsychotics
  • Metabolic syndrome
  • Olanzapine
  • Schizophrenia
  • Telomere length

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Biological Psychiatry


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