Description: It continues to be unfortunate that schizophrenia is studied as if it is a single disease. The current concept of schizophrenia is likely to include multiple phenotypically overlapping syndromes and diseases, and schizophrenia can no longer be considered a unitary entity. Any research that does not take this heterogeneity seriously has, in my opinion, outlived its usefulness. This book does not, for the most part, incorporate any issues of validity and heterogeneity and most of the chapters use the unitary concept as a default. The book is written and edited largely (but not entirely) by pharmaceutical industry scientists. Although the review of receptor pharmacology is helpful, I did not find that this book, as a whole, advanced my knowledge of psychosis in general and schizophrenia specifically.
Purpose: The purpose, according to the editors, is to "present the basics of schizophrenia, drug targets for the disease, and potential new drugs and therapeutics."
Audience: The intended audience, although not specifically stated, includes psychiatrists, psychiatric researchers, and psychopharmacological researchers.
Features: The chapters cover etiology and prevalence, dopamine agonists and phosphodiesterase inhibitors, receptor modulators, inhibitors, and targeting strategies for drug discovery. Each chapter ends with relevant citations of the scientific literature. The index is quite detailed.
Assessment: Because the book is authored by research scientists working in the pharmaceutical industry, I doubt clinicians would find it useful. I am sorry, but I cannot recommend it.