Date of Award

Spring 3-24-2023

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Medical Science (MMSc)

First Advisor

Vinod Srihari, MD


Schizophrenia is a serious mental illness that presents with hallucinations and delusions (positive symptoms) as well as behavioral deficits (negative symptoms), cognitive decline, and metabolic abnormalities such as weight gain and insulin resistance. Antipsychotic medications are essential for treating the positive symptoms of schizophrenia but contribute to metabolic dysregulation. Semaglutide, a glucagon-like peptide receptor agonist, can help address weight gain and insulin-resistance in schizophrenia. However, the effect of semaglutide on cognition and negative symptoms remains unknown. This study aims to directly assess the efficacy of semaglutide for the treatment of negative symptoms and cognition in schizophrenia. 120 patients will be randomized into a 6-month intervention on the effects of semaglutide versus placebo for negative symptoms and cognition in schizophrenia. We hypothesize that semaglutide will result in greater improvement of negative symptoms and cognition than placebo at 6-month assessment. Positive results could improve treatment of difficult-to-treat symptoms in schizophrenia.