Interestingly, a group of researchers has claimed that olanzapine (Zyprexa) has "neuroprotective" qualities; it's good for your brain. Um, color me skeptical. Their research was based on rats, whereas Andreasen's work is on humans. Andreasen's latest work is not yet published, making it difficult to judge the quality of the findings. But research on monkeys exposed to antipsychotics found that:
In conclusion, chronic exposure of non-human primates to antipsychotics was associated with reduced brain volume.I am not a neuroscientist, but if both sets of findings were accurate, then we'd have people taking antipsychotics who have smaller but better brains. The more neuroscientifically inclined may wish to comment on this possibility, because it seems a little odd to me.