Lipoic Acid as Adjunctive Treatment for Schizophrenia

November 15, 2017 Consumer Blog By


Accumulating evidence suggests an involvement of oxidative stress in the pathophysiology of schizophrenia. This offers a hypothesis-derived therapeutic approach to hinder oxidative damage and its clinical sequelae. α-Lipoic acid (ALA) is a powerful natural antioxidant indicated to treat diabetic neuropathy.


In this pilot investigation, we administered ALA (100 mg/d) for 4 months, as an adjunct to antipsychotic medication, to 10 patients with schizophrenia.


We found robust improvement in measures of psychopathology (63.9% reduction in Brief Psychiatric Rating Scale scores), neurocognitive parameters, extrapyramidal symptoms, and decreased lipid peroxidation.


If larger, double-blind, placebo-controlled studies confirm these preliminary findings, ALA could prove useful as adjunctive therapy for schizophrenia.


  1. J Clin Psychopharmacol. 2017 Dec;37(6):697-701. doi: 10.1097/JCP.0000000000000800.
  2. Sanders LLO1, de Souza Menezes CE, Chaves Filho AJM, de Almeida Viana G, Fechine FV, Rodrigues de Queiroz MG, Gonçalvez da Cruz Fonseca S, Mendes Vasconcelos SM, Amaral de Moraes ME, Gama CS, Seybolt S, de Moura Campos E, Macêdo D, Freitas de Lucena D.

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