SCHIZOPHRENIA AND RELATED DISORDERS: Edited by Lynn E. Delisi and W. Wolfgang FleischhackerGamma band oscillations a key to understanding schizophrenia symptoms and neural circuit abnormalitiesMcNally, James M.; McCarley, Robert W.Author Information Laboratory of Neuroscience, VA Boston Healthcare System and Department of Psychiatry, Harvard Medical School, Brockton, Massachusetts, USA Correspondence to Robert W. McCarley, MD, Department of Psychiatry, VABHS/Harvard Medical School, 940 Belmont St., Brockton, MA 02301, USA. Tel: +1 (774) 826 2479; fax: + 1 (774) 826 2483; e-mail: email@example.com;firstname.lastname@example.org Current Opinion in Psychiatry: May 2016 - Volume 29 - Issue 3 - p 202-210 doi: 10.1097/YCO.0000000000000244 Buy Metrics Abstract Purpose of review We review our current understanding of abnormal γ band oscillations in schizophrenia, their association with symptoms and the underlying cortical circuit abnormality, with a particular focus on the role of fast-spiking parvalbumin gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) neurons in the disease state. Recent findings Clinical electrophysiological studies of schizophrenia patients and pharmacological models of the disorder show an increase in spontaneous γ band activity (not stimulus-evoked) measures. These findings provide a crucial link between preclinical and clinical work examining the role of γ band activity in schizophrenia. MRI-based experiments measuring cortical GABA provides evidence supporting impaired GABAergic neurotransmission in schizophrenia patients, which is correlated with γ band activity level. Several studies suggest that stimulation of the cortical circuitry, directly or via subcortical structures, has the potential to modulate cortical γ activity, and improve cognitive function. Summary Abnormal γ band activity is observed in patients with schizophrenia and disease models in animals, and is suggested to underlie the psychosis and cognitive/perceptual deficits. Convergent evidence from both clinical and preclinical studies suggest the central factor in γ band abnormalities is impaired GABAergic neurotransmission, particularly in a subclass of neurons which express parvalbumin. Rescue of γ band abnormalities presents an intriguing option for therapeutic intervention. Copyright © 2016 Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc. All rights reserved.