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Shared and distinct gray matter abnormalities in schizophrenia, schizophrenia relatives and bipolar disorder in association with cognitive impairment

Knöchel, Christian, Stäblein, Michael, Prvulovic, David, Ghinea, Denisa, Wenzler, Sofia, Pantel, Johannes, Alves, Gilberto, Linden, David Edmund Johannes, Harrison, Octavia, Carvalho, Andre, Reif, Andreas and Oertel-Knöchel, Viola 2016. Shared and distinct gray matter abnormalities in schizophrenia, schizophrenia relatives and bipolar disorder in association with cognitive impairment. Schizophrenia Research 171 (1-3) , pp. 140-148. 10.1016/j.schres.2016.01.035

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Abstract

Cognitive impairments have been linked to structural and functional alterations in frontal and subcortical brain regions, ultimately leading to fronto-thalamic connectivity disturbances. We hypothesized that such neuronal disruptions in frontal and subcortical structures may account for neuropsychological deficits in schizophrenia (SZ), schizophrenia relatives and bipolar disorder (BD). We acquired T1-weighted anatomical MRI sequences in 209 participants: 57 SZ patients, 47 first-degree relatives of SZ patients, 48 BD I patients and 57 healthy controls. We computed group comparisons of gray matter (GM) volume in frontal and basal ganglia regions-of-interest, followed by correlation analysis between psychomotor speed, executive functioning and learning and GM volumes in candidate regions. Several frontal GM volume reductions as well as GM increases in the thalamus and the putamen were exhibited in SZ patients as compared to controls. The same finding was observed - less pronounced - when comparing SZ relatives and controls. BD patients presented GM volume increases in the basal ganglia in comparison to controls. In SZ patients, increases in bilateral thalamus GM volume and decreases in left middle and superior frontal gyrus volume were significantly associated with worse cognitive performance. In summary, our results indicate distinct imbalances across frontal-subcortical circuits in BD, SZ relatives and SZ. The functional relevance of the findings were mainly limited to the SZ patients group: in this group, abnormalities were directly associated with cognitive performance. This result is in line with the finding that the volume alterations were strongest in SZ patients and followed by BD patients and SZ relatives.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Published Online
Status: Published
Schools: Medicine
Publisher: Elsevier
ISSN: 0920-9964
Date of Acceptance: 12 January 2016
Last Modified: 01 Sep 2017 14:00
URI: http://orca.cf.ac.uk/id/eprint/103359

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