Psychiatric illnesses may be qualified to the cellular impairments of the function for survival or death in neurons, which may consequently appear as abnormalities in the neuroplasticity. The molecular mechanism has not been well understood, however, it seems that PI3K, AKT, GSK3, and their downstream molecules have crucial roles in the pathogenesis. Through transducing cell surviving signal, the PI3K/AKT/GSK3 pathway may organize an intracellular central network for the action of the synaptic neuroplasticity. In addition, the pathways may also regulate cell proliferation, cell migration, and apoptosis. Several lines of evidence have supported a role for this signaling network underlying the development and treatment for psychiatric illnesses. Indeed, the discovery of molecular biochemical phenotypes would represent a breakthrough in the research for effective treatment. In this review, we summarize advances on the involvement of the PI3K/AKT/GSK3 pathways in cell signaling of neuronal cells. This study may provide novel insights on the mechanism of mental disorder involved in psychiatric illnesses and would open future opportunity for contributions suggesting new targets for diagnostic and/or therapeutic procedures.
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