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Journal Cover Schizophrenia Research : Cognition
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  This is an Open Access Journal Open Access journal
   ISSN (Print) 2215-0013
   Published by Elsevier Homepage  [2817 journals]
  • e-Motional Training®: Pilot study on a novel online training program
           on social cognition for patients with schizophrenia

    • Abstract: Publication date: June 2016
      Source:Schizophrenia Research: Cognition, Volume 4
      Author(s): Miriam Vázquez-Campo, Yolanda Maroño, Guillermo Lahera, Raimundo Mateos, Alejandro García-Caballero
      Background Patients with schizophrenia have deficits in social cognition (SC), a construct that includes emotion perception (EP), social perception (SP), theory of mind (ToM) and attributive style (AS). The aim of our study was to assess the applicability, identify potential problems and obtain preliminary data on the efficacy of a new online training program on SC called e-Motional Training (ET®), which can be remotely administered and remotely supervised by a clinician. Materials and methods A pre/post intervention pilot study was conducted with 21 patients with schizophrenia in the healthcare area of Ourense, Spain (12 patients were assigned to the intervention group and 9 in the control group). The control group received standard treatment (TAU) (occupational therapy and leisure group). The intervention group received TAU plus 12 sessions (1hour per week) with ET® (including training modules on emotional perception and a short animated cartoon for ToM and AS training, including automated metacognitive feedback). Endpoints: EP (Ekman 60 Faces Test), ToM (Hinting Task, Faux Pas, Happé), AS (Ambiguous Intentions Hostility Questionnaire). Results ET® was shown to be an understandable, viable and pleasant program for the participants. After the intervention, statistically significant data (p<0.05) were obtained for the EP, ToM and AS variables. Conclusion ET® enables self-training in SC and online follow-up by the therapist, thereby covering the lack of online intervention instruments validated for patients with SC deficits. Our preliminary results demonstrate the feasibility of ET® and its possible efficacy in improving emotion recognition, ToM and AS.


      PubDate: 2016-03-15T02:43:16Z
       
  • Kynurenine pathway and cognitive impairments in schizophrenia:
           Pharmacogenetics of galantamine and memantine

    • Abstract: Publication date: June 2016
      Source:Schizophrenia Research: Cognition, Volume 4
      Author(s): Maju Mathew Koola
      The Measurement and Treatment Research to Improve Cognition in Schizophrenia (MATRICS) project designed to facilitate the development of new drugs for the treatment of cognitive impairments in people with schizophrenia, identified three drug mechanisms of particular interest: dopaminergic, cholinergic, and glutamatergic. Galantamine is an acetylcholinesterase inhibitor and a positive allosteric modulator of the α7 nicotinic receptors. Memantine is an N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptor antagonist. There is evidence to suggest that the combination of galantamine and memantine may be effective in the treatment of cognitive impairments in schizophrenia. There is a growing body of evidence that excess kynurenic acid (KYNA) is associated with cognitive impairments in schizophrenia. The α-7 nicotinic and the NMDA receptors may counteract the effects of kynurenic acid (KYNA) resulting in cognitive enhancement. Galantamine and memantine through its α-7 nicotinic and NMDA receptors respectively may counteract the effects of KYNA thereby improving cognitive impairments. The Single Nucleotide Polymorphisms in the Cholinergic Receptor, Nicotinic, Alpha 7 gene (CHRNA7), Glutamate (NMDA) Receptor, Metabotropic 1 (GRM1) gene, Dystrobrevin Binding Protein 1 (DTNBP1) and kynurenine 3-monooxygenase (KMO) gene may predict treatment response to galantamine and memantine combination for cognitive impairments in schizophrenia in the kynurenine pathway.


      PubDate: 2016-03-15T02:43:16Z
       
  • Attribution bias and social anxiety in schizophrenia

    • Abstract: Publication date: June 2016
      Source:Schizophrenia Research: Cognition, Volume 4
      Author(s): Amelie M. Achim, Stephanie Sutliff, Crystal Samson, Tina C. Montreuil, Tania Lecomte
      Studies on attribution biases in schizophrenia have produced mixed results, whereas such biases have been more consistently reported in people with anxiety disorders. Anxiety comorbidities are frequent in schizophrenia, in particular social anxiety disorder, which could influence their patterns of attribution biases. The objective of the present study was thus to determine if individuals with schizophrenia and a comorbid social anxiety disorder (SZ+) show distinct attribution biases as compared with individuals with schizophrenia without social anxiety (SZ−) and healthy controls. Attribution biases were assessed with the Internal, Personal, and Situational Attributions Questionnaire in 41 individual with schizophrenia and 41 healthy controls. Results revealed the lack of the normal externalizing bias in SZ+, whereas SZ− did not significantly differ from healthy controls on this dimension. The personalizing bias was not influenced by social anxiety but was in contrast linked with delusions, with a greater personalizing bias in individuals with current delusions. Future studies on attribution biases in schizophrenia should carefully document symptom presentation, including social anxiety.


      PubDate: 2016-02-27T00:46:20Z
       
  • Neuropsychological correlates of remission in chronic schizophrenia
           subjects: The role of general and task-specific executive processes

    • Abstract: Publication date: March 2016
      Source:Schizophrenia Research: Cognition, Volume 3
      Author(s): Thais Rabanea-Souza, Henrique T. Akiba, Arthur A. Berberian, Rodrigo A. Bressan, Álvaro M. Dias, Acioly L.T. Lacerda
      Background Although cognitive deficits have consistently been characterized as core features of schizophrenia, they have not been incorporated into definitions of remission. Furthermore, just a few studies have examined the relationship between cognitive deficits and symptomatic remission. The main aim of the present study is to evaluate the executive functioning of nonremitted schizophrenia patients. Methods 72 remitted and 42 nonremitted schizophrenia patients, and 119 healthy controls were examined. Subjects were tested with a comprehensive battery of cognitive tests, including a measure to assess the general components of executive functioning and individual tasks to tap the three specific executive dimensions assessed in the present study, namely updating, shifting and inhibition. Results Schizophrenia subjects performed poorly on general executive functioning and shifting tasks in comparison to healthy controls. Remitted subjects performed better than nonremitted on inhibition and updating tasks. Whereas being a male and showing decreases in updating increase the chances of being in the nonremitted schizophrenia subjects group, increases in shifting and updating enhance the odds of being in the healthy control group. Conclusion The present findings suggest that executive function deficits are present in chronic schizophrenic patients. In addition, specific executive processes might be associated to symptom remission. Future studies examining prospectively first-episode, drug naive patients diagnosed with schizophrenia may be especially elucidative.


      PubDate: 2016-02-16T23:07:11Z
       
  • Paranoid individuals with schizophrenia show greater social cognitive bias
           and worse social functioning than non-paranoid individuals with
           schizophrenia

    • Abstract: Publication date: March 2016
      Source:Schizophrenia Research: Cognition, Volume 3
      Author(s): Amy E. Pinkham, Philip D. Harvey, David L. Penn
      Paranoia is a common symptom of schizophrenia that may be related to how individuals process and respond to social stimuli. Previous investigations support a link between increased paranoia and greater social cognitive impairments, but these studies have been limited to single domains of social cognition, and no studies have examined how paranoia may influence functional outcome. Data from 147 individuals with schizophrenia were used to examine whether actively paranoid and non-paranoid individuals with schizophrenia differ in social cognition and functional outcomes. On measures assessing social cognitive bias, paranoid individuals endorsed more hostile and blaming attributions and identified more faces as untrustworthy; however, paranoid and non-paranoid individuals did not differ on emotion recognition and theory of mind tasks assessing social cognitive ability. Likewise, paranoid individuals showed greater impairments in real-world interpersonal relationships and social acceptability as compared to non-paranoid patients, but these differences did not extend to performance based tasks assessing functional capacity and social competence. These findings isolate specific social cognitive disparities between paranoid and non-paranoid subgroups and suggest that paranoia may exacerbate the social dysfunction that is commonly experienced by individuals with schizophrenia.


      PubDate: 2016-01-14T21:08:57Z
       
  • Clinical (but not cognitive) recovery in schizophrenia through the
           experience of fictional cinema

    • Abstract: Publication date: December 2015
      Source:Schizophrenia Research: Cognition, Volume 2, Issue 4
      Author(s): J. Peña, P. Sánchez, E. Elizagárate, N. Ibarretxe-Bilbao, J. Ezcurra, L. Caballero, M. Magariños, I. García Del Castillo, M. Gutiérrez, N. Ojeda
      Introduction One of the criticisms of rehabilitation techniques is their limited application to the patient’s daily life. In the past, cinema has been used as a psychiatric rehabilitation tool, with the primary objective of facilitating training in social abilities and communication. In this study, we consider the use of film not only as a clinical recovery tool but also as a novel cognitive recovery tool for additional rehabilitation not only for communication and social abilities but also for all of the basic cognitive and social cognition processes. Methods In this randomized clinical trial, 48 patients with schizophrenia were assigned to an experimental or control group. Both of the groups received treatment sessions that included viewing episodes of the television series The Sopranos. Next, the experimental group participated in a structured cognitive training session that featured questions and exercises based on the episodes. The control group participated in an idea-sharing session (of the same duration and frequency) about what the group members saw in the episode. Results At the end of the treatment, both the positive and negative clinical symptoms of the experimental group improved significantly compared with the control group. However, this improvement was not observed in basic or social cognitive functions. Discussion A brief intervention based on transforming the activities of daily life can be an effective tool for psychiatric rehabilitation. However, the study’s current characteristics and sample did not produce benefits in cognitive parameters.


      PubDate: 2015-12-20T18:12:57Z
       
  • Editorial Letter into Spanish

    • Abstract: Publication date: December 2015
      Source:Schizophrenia Research: Cognition, Volume 2, Issue 4
      Author(s): Natalia Ojeda Del Pozo



      PubDate: 2015-12-20T18:12:57Z
       
  • Editorial Letter

    • Abstract: Publication date: December 2015
      Source:Schizophrenia Research: Cognition, Volume 2, Issue 4
      Author(s): Natalia Ojeda del Pozo



      PubDate: 2015-12-20T18:12:57Z
       
  • The search for new biomarkers for cognition in schizophrenia

    • Abstract: Publication date: December 2015
      Source:Schizophrenia Research: Cognition, Volume 2, Issue 4
      Author(s): Rafael Penadés, Clemente García-Rizo, Miquel Bioque, Alexandre González-Rodríguez, Bibiana Cabrera, Gisela Mezquida, Miquel Bernardo
      The search for biomarkers in cognition has been the focus of a large part of the research on patients suffering from schizophrenia. The scientific literature is heterogeneous, and few studies establishing an integrative model of pathogenesis and therapeutic response are available in this field. In this review, we aimed to summarize three essential aspects correlated with cognitive performance: 1) the relationship between inflammation and cognition in schizophrenia, 2) the role of prolactin in cognition, and 3) the association between cognition and neurotrophic factors, particularly brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF). Several studies support the association of inflammatory markers with cognitive status in schizophrenia. In recent decades, the development of effective therapies for cognitive impairment in schizophrenia has focused on the search for anti-inflammatory and immunomodulatory medications. Conversely, the implications of prolactin and its functions in cognition, the transition to psychosis and the diagnosis and prognosis of schizophrenia have been established independent of antipsychotic treatment. With regard to neurotrophic factors, a recent study has correlated BDNF levels with cognitive recovery in schizophrenic patients treated with cognitive remediation. We conclude that although there is a diversity of biomarkers focused on cognitive function in schizophrenia, BDNF is the biomarker that has accumulated the vast majority of evidence in the current literature.


      PubDate: 2015-12-20T18:12:57Z
       
  • Altered emotional modulation of associative memory in first episode
           schizophrenia: An fMRI study

    • Abstract: Publication date: March 2016
      Source:Schizophrenia Research: Cognition, Volume 3
      Author(s): David Luck, Ridha Joober, Ashok Malla, Martin Lepage
      Alterations of associative memory, resulting from perturbations within the medial temporal lobe, are well established in schizophrenia. So far, all the studies having examined associative memory in schizophrenia have limited ecological validity, as people experience various emotional stimuli in their life. As such, emotion must be taken into account in order to fully understand memory. Thus, we designed an fMRI study aimed at investigating neural correlates of the effects of emotions on associative memory in schizophrenia. Twenty-four first episode schizophrenia (FES) patients and 20 matched controls were instructed to memorize 90 pairs of standardized pictures during a scanned encoding phase. Each of the 90 pairs was composed of a scene and an unrelated object. Furthermore, trials were either neutral or emotional as a function of the emotional valence of the scene comprising each pair. FES patients exhibited lower performance for both conditions than controls, with greater deficits in regard to emotional versus neutral associations. fMRI analyses revealed that these deficits were related to lower activations in mnemonic and limbic regions. This study provides evidence of altered associative memory and emotional modulation in schizophrenia, resulting from dysfunctions in the cerebral networks underlying memory, emotion, and encoding strategies. Together, our results suggest that all these dysfunctions may be targets for new therapeutic interventions known to improve cognitive deficits in schizophrenia.


      PubDate: 2015-12-20T18:12:57Z
       
  • Predicting employment status and subjective quality of life in patients
           with schizophrenia

    • Abstract: Publication date: March 2016
      Source:Schizophrenia Research: Cognition, Volume 3
      Author(s): Haruo Fujino, Chika Sumiyoshi, Tomiki Sumiyoshi, Yuka Yasuda, Hidenaga Yamamori, Kazutaka Ohi, Michiko Fujimoto, Ryota Hashimoto, Masatoshi Takeda, Osamu Imura
      Although impaired social functioning, particularly poor employment status, is a cardinal feature of patients with schizophrenia and leads to decreased quality of life (QOL), few studies have addressed the relationship between these two clinical issues. The aim of this study was to determine whether employment status predicts subjective QOL and to evaluate a model in which functional capacity mediates the relationship between general cognitive performance and employment status. Ninety-three patients with schizophrenia were administered a comprehensive battery of cognitive tests, the UCSD Performance-based Skills Assessment-Brief version (UPSA-B), the Social Functioning Scale (SFS), and the Subjective Quality of Life Scale (SQLS). First, we evaluated a model for predicting the employment/occupation subscale score of the SFS using path analysis, and the model fitted well (χ 2 (4)=3.6, p =0.46; CFI=1.0; RMSEA<0.001, with 90% CIs: 0–0.152). Employment status was predicted by negative symptoms and functional capacity, which was in turn predicted by general cognitive performance. Second, we added subjective QOL to this model. In a final path model, QOL was predicted by negative symptoms and employment status. This model also satisfied good fit criteria (χ 2 (7)=10.3, p =0.17; CFI=0.987; RMSEA=0.072, with 90% CIs: 0–0.159). The UPSA-B and SFS scores were moderately correlated with most measures of cognitive performance. These results support the notion that better employment status enhances subjective QOL in patients with schizophrenia.


      PubDate: 2015-12-10T17:19:33Z
       
  • Intact unconscious processing of eye contact in schizophrenia

    • Abstract: Publication date: March 2016
      Source:Schizophrenia Research: Cognition, Volume 3
      Author(s): Kiley Seymour, Gillian Rhodes, Timo Stein, Robyn Langdon
      The perception of eye gaze is crucial for social interaction, providing essential information about another person’s goals, intentions, and focus of attention. People with schizophrenia suffer a wide range of social cognitive deficits, including abnormalities in eye gaze perception. For instance, patients have shown an increased bias to misjudge averted gaze as being directed toward them. In this study we probed early unconscious mechanisms of gaze processing in schizophrenia using a technique known as continuous flash suppression. Previous research using this technique to render faces with direct and averted gaze initially invisible reveals that direct eye contact gains privileged access to conscious awareness in healthy adults. We found that patients, as with healthy control subjects, showed the same effect: faces with direct eye gaze became visible significantly faster than faces with averted gaze. This suggests that early unconscious processing of eye gaze is intact in schizophrenia and implies that any misjudgments of gaze direction must manifest at a later conscious stage of gaze processing where deficits and/or biases in attributing mental states to gaze and/or beliefs about being watched may play a role.


      PubDate: 2015-12-10T17:19:33Z
       
  • Selective impairment of global motion integration, but not global form
           detection, in schizophrenia and bipolar affective disorder

    • Abstract: Publication date: March 2016
      Source:Schizophrenia Research: Cognition, Volume 3
      Author(s): Daniel Bennett, Amy Dluzniak, Simon J. Cropper, Timea Partos, Suresh Sundram, Olivia Carter
      Recent evidence suggests that schizophrenia is associated with impaired processing of global visual motion, but intact processing of global visual form. This project assessed whether preserved visual form detection in schizophrenia extended beyond low-level pattern discrimination to a naturalistic form-detection task. We assessed both naturalistic form detection and global motion detection in individuals with schizophrenia spectrum disorder, bipolar affective disorder, and healthy controls. Individuals with schizophrenia spectrum disorder and bipolar affective disorder were impaired relative to healthy controls on the global motion task, but not the naturalistic form-detection task. Results indicate that preservation of visual form detection in these disorders extends beyond configural forms to naturalistic object processing.


      PubDate: 2015-12-10T17:19:33Z
       
  • Concepts of ‘self’ in delusion resolution

    • Abstract: Publication date: March 2016
      Source:Schizophrenia Research: Cognition, Volume 3
      Author(s): Julia Longenecker, Christy Hui, Eric Y.H. Chen, Brita Elvevåg



      PubDate: 2015-12-05T16:33:37Z
       
  • Neuroscience-informed auditory training in schizophrenia: A final report
           of the effects on cognition and serum brain-derived neurotrophic factor

    • Abstract: Publication date: March 2016
      Source:Schizophrenia Research: Cognition, Volume 3
      Author(s): Melissa Fisher, Synthia H. Mellon, Owen Wolkowitz, Sophia Vinogradov
      Objective We previously reported the interim effects in a per protocol analysis of a randomized controlled trial of an innovative neuroscience-informed computerized cognitive training approach in schizophrenia. Here we report the effects of training on behavioral outcome measures in our final sample using an intent-to-treat analysis. We also report the effects on serum brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF). Method Eighty-seven clinically stable participants with schizophrenia were randomly assigned to either targeted auditory training (AT, N=46) or a computer games control condition (CG, N=41). Participants were assessed on neurocognition, symptoms and functional outcome at baseline and after 50 hours of intervention delivered over 10 weeks. Serum BDNF was assessed at baseline, at 2 weeks, and at 10 weeks. Results After the intervention, AT participants showed significant gains in global cognition, speed of processing, verbal learning, and verbal memory, relative to CG participants, with no changes in symptoms or functioning. At baseline, schizophrenia participants had significantly lower-than-normal serum BDNF. AT participants showed a significant increase in serum BDNF compared to CG participants, and “normalized” levels by post training. Conclusions Participants with chronic schizophrenia made significant cognitive gains after 50 hours of intensive computerized training delivered as a stand-alone treatment, but no improvement in symptoms or functioning. Serum BDNF levels were significantly increased, and may serve as a peripheral biomarker for the effects of training. Future research must focus on: 1) Methods of integrating cognitive training with psychosocial treatments; 2) A deeper understanding of underlying neurophysiology in order to enhance critical mechanisms of action.


      PubDate: 2015-12-05T16:33:37Z
       
  • Neurocognitive normality in schizophrenia revisited

    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 19 November 2015
      Source:Schizophrenia Research: Cognition
      Author(s): R. Walter Heinrichs, Farena Pinnock, Eva Muharib, Leah Hartman, Joel Goldberg, Stephanie McDermid Vaz
      The validity and significance of normal range neurocognition in schizophrenia remain unclear and controversial. We assessed whether normal range patients and controls demonstrate evidence of decline relative to premorbid ability and differ in performance profiles across measures, including those external to the normality criterion. In addition, we compared below normal range healthy control participants with patients at the same ability level. Performance normality was defined as a MATRICS Consensus Cognitive Battery (MCCB) composite T score between 40 and 60. Patients (n=17) and controls (n=24) meeting the criterion were compared on MCCB domain scores and on independent measures of reading ability, probabilistic and social reasoning. Patients (n=19) and controls (n=20) scoring below 40 on the MCCB composite were compared on the same set of measures. Cognitively normal range patients and controls did not differ on estimated premorbid ability or decline and differed only on the Processing Speed domain of the MCCB. Performance did not differ across other domains or on social and probabilistic reasoning tasks. Cognitively below normal range patients and controls showed marked discrepancies between premorbid and current ability, but there were no group differences. In addition, below normal range groups did not differ on any MCCB domain score or in terms of external cognitive measures. Cognitively normal range schizophrenia patients may be largely indistinguishable from normal range controls, with the exception of processing speed performance. More typical schizophrenia patients below the normal range may be indistinguishable from low-performing controls even in terms of processing speed.


      PubDate: 2015-11-25T15:55:33Z
       
  • The impact of the Val158Met COMT polymorphism on context processing in
           patients on the schizophrenia spectrum and their relatives

    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 14 November 2015
      Source:Schizophrenia Research: Cognition
      Author(s): Pilar López-García, Leslie Young, Juan Marín, Patricio Molero, Felipe Ortuño
      Introduction The level of dopamine in the prefrontal cortex (PFC) appears to play a fundamental role in cognitive alterations in schizophrenia. The Val158Met polymorphism of the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) enzyme impacts dopamine availability in the prefrontal cortex and can thus influence cognitive functioning. Among the different cognitive deficits found in schizophrenia patients, context processing deficits have been noted as a specific characteristic of schizophrenia, for which the cerebral substrate appears to be located in the dorsolateral PFC. In this study, we examine the impact of the Val158Met COMT polymorphism on context processing in a sample of patients on the schizophrenia spectrum, their relatives, and healthy control subjects evaluated using the Dot Probe Expectancy Task (DPX). Methods Forty patients on the schizophrenia spectrum, 26 relatives, and 63 healthy control subjects were genotyped and performed the DPX test. Results: Both patients and their relatives demonstrated deficits in context processing influenced by the Val158Met COMT polymorphism. Compared with the other subjects, the Val/Val subjects showed poorer performance on context processing tasks. Conclusions Deficits in context processing in schizophrenic patients and their families are influenced by the Val158Met COMT functional polymorphism, likely as a consequence of reduced dopamine availability in the PFC.


      PubDate: 2015-11-20T15:37:18Z
       
  • Temporal processing in schizophrenia: Review

    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 16 November 2015
      Source:Schizophrenia Research: Cognition
      Author(s): Irene Alústiza, Nuria Pujol, Patricio Molero, Felipe Ortuño
      We review the main contributions of the cognitive neuroscience literature in the field of time processing in schizophrenia. First, we summarize the theoretical concepts and terminology related to time and time estimation and the characterization of this deficit in the illness. Second, we thoroughly review the neuroanatomical basis of this deficit and its interactions with other cognitive processes and clinical symptoms. Third, we specifically highlight the main findings of studies that have analyzed temporal discrimination using cognitive tasks performed during functional neuroimaging. Summary This review aims to summarize the main findings of the neuroscientific and cognitive literature on temporality in schizophrenia. First, we will provide a brief introduction regarding the theoretical and conceptual issues and then will delve into the importance of their disturbance in this disorder, particularly underlying brain structures and the interactions they have with other cognitive dysfunctions and psychopathological symptoms. This review includes different studies that describe both behavioral and neuroscientific approaches, although it focuses especially on tasks of temporal discrimination on the milliseconds scale and on the studies that use functional neuroimaging techniques.


      PubDate: 2015-11-20T15:37:18Z
       
  • Increased Internet use and poorer ability to manage emotions in youth at
           high-risk for psychosis

    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 17 November 2015
      Source:Schizophrenia Research: Cognition
      Author(s): Andrea Pelletier-Baldelli, Lindsay Ives, Vijay A. Mittal
      The relationship between Internet use and social behavior remains unknown. However, research indicates that Internet use (IU) may have some causal role in certain types of psychopathology and overall functioning. In contrast, other work suggests that IU may be protective and buffer against social isolation. Poorer emotional processing (EP) is characteristic of schizophrenia, and these deficits are present prior to illness onset (the ultra high-risk period (UHR)). UHR adolescents/young adults also fall within an age demographic characterized by extensive IU, which suggests that evaluating a link between IU and social behavior in this population may be especially informative. The present study examined the relationship between IU and emotional processing in 98 adolescents/young adults (52 UHR youth and 46 controls). UHR youth exhibited greater problematic IU (β=−6.49, F(1,95)=8.79, p =0.002) and social withdrawal/problems resulting from this use (β=−3.23, F(1,95)=11.43, p <0.001), as well deficits in emotional processing in comparison to healthy peers (β=4.59, F(1,94)=5.52, p =0.011). Furthermore, the social problems resulting from IU were significantly related to the ability to process emotional information in the UHR group (β=−0.51, t(1,48)=−2.10, p =0.021). UHR youth showed evidence of problematic IU relative to controls, and the social problems resulting from IU related to poorer EP. Findings replicate extant research involving other psychosis risk populations, while adding information regarding how social processes may relate to IU.


      PubDate: 2015-11-20T15:37:18Z
       
  • Neurocognition as a predictor of outcome in schizophrenia in the Northern
           Finland Birth Cohort 1966

    • Abstract: Publication date: September 2015
      Source:Schizophrenia Research: Cognition, Volume 2, Issue 3
      Author(s): P. Juola, J. Miettunen, H. Salo, G.K. Murray, A.O. Ahmed, J. Veijola, M. Isohanni, E. Jääskeläinen
      The purpose of this study was to study neurocognitive performance as a predictor of outcomes in midlife schizophrenia. There is a lack of studies with unselected samples and a long follow-up. The study is based on the prospective, unselected population-based Northern Finland Birth Cohort 1966. The study includes 43 individuals with schizophrenia and 73 controls, whose neurocognitive performance was assessed twice, at 34 and 43years. At both time points we used identical neurocognitive tests to assess verbal and visual memory and executive functions. Our main aim was to analyse neurocognitive performance at 34years as a predictor of clinical, vocational and global outcomes at 43years. Additionally, the analysis addressed cross-sectional associations between cognitive performance and clinical, vocational and global measures at 43years. The assessment of outcomes was performed in the schizophrenia group only. In the longitudinal analysis poorer visual memory predicted poorer vocational outcome and poorer long-term verbal memory predicted poorer global outcome. In the cross-sectional analysis poorer visual memory and lower composite score of neurocognition were associated with poorer global outcome. No individual neurocognitive test or the composite score of these predicted remission. These data indicate that neurocognition, especially memory function, is an important determinant of long-term functional outcome in midlife schizophrenia.


      PubDate: 2015-09-22T07:45:06Z
       
  • Different P50 sensory gating measures reflect different cognitive
           dysfunctions in schizophrenia

    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 9 September 2015
      Source:Schizophrenia Research: Cognition
      Author(s): Atsuhito Toyomaki, Naoki Hashimoto, Yuki Kako, Yoshiro Tomimatsu, Tsukasa Koyama, Ichiro Kusumi
      The P50 is an early component of auditory evoked potentials and a measure of sensory gating deficits. This evoked potential component is thought to be an important endophenotype candidate for schizophrenia. Recent research suggests that instead of the P50 ratio, S1 and S2 amplitudes should be evaluated for sensory gating. However, no studies have focused on the relationship between cognitive dysfunction and P50 sensory gating deficits using S1 and S2 amplitudes. The purpose of the present study was to investigate the association between the P50 ratio (S2/S1), S1 and S2 amplitudes, and neuropsychological cognitive domains using stepwise multiple linear regression analyses. Results demonstrated a significant relationship between executive functioning and the P50 ratio and between sustained attention and S2 amplitude, respectively. Our findings suggest that the P50 ratio and S2 amplitude reflect distinct neurophysiological substrates associated with different cognitive functions.


      PubDate: 2015-09-12T08:46:33Z
       
  • Poor premorbid school performance, but not severity of illness, predicts
           cognitive decline in schizophrenia in midlife

    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 9 September 2015
      Source:Schizophrenia Research: Cognition
      Author(s): Irina Rannikko, Graham K. Murray, Pauliina Juola, Henri Salo, Marianne Haapea, Jouko Miettunen, Juha Veijola, Jennifer H. Barnett, Anja P. Husa, Peter B. Jones, Marjo-Riitta Järvelin, Matti Isohanni, Erika Jääskeläinen
      Neurocognitive dysfunction is common in schizophrenia but its course and determinants remain uncertain. Our aim was to analyse if premorbid school performance and the severity of illness and functioning predict change in cognition in schizophrenia in a general population sample. The sample included cases with schizophrenia spectrum disorder from the Northern Finland Birth Cohort 1966. Data on school marks at the age of 16years, educational level at the age of 34years, severity of symptoms and occupational functioning around first episode and after years of illness were gained from national registers, hospital notes and interviews. Change of verbal and visual learning and memory and executive functioning were examined between ages 34 and 43years. The number of cases varied in analyses from 29 to 41, depending on missing data in particular cognitive tests. Lower school marks at age 16 years and lower education at age 34 years predicted more decline of cognition. Measures of severity of illness or functioning were not associated statistically significantly with change of cognition. Premorbid school performance, but not later course of schizophrenia, related to change of cognition in midlife. Poor premorbid scholastic performance and post-onset cognitive decline may represent related processes as part of an endophenotype of schizophrenia.


      PubDate: 2015-09-12T08:46:33Z
       
  • Factors predicting work outcome in Japanese patients with schizophrenia:
           role of multiple functioning levels

    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 9 September 2015
      Source:Schizophrenia Research: Cognition
      Author(s): Chika Sumiyoshi, Philip D. Harvey, Manabu Takaki, Yuko Okahisa, Taku Sato, Ichiro Sora, Keith H. Nuechterlein, Kenneth L. Subotnik, Tomiki Sumiyoshi
      Functional outcomes in individuals with schizophrenia suggest recovery of cognitive, everyday, and social functioning. Specifically improvement of work status is considered to be most important for their independent living and self-efficacy. The main purposes of the present study were 1) to identify which outcome factors predict occupational functioning, quantified as work hours, and 2) to provide cut-offs on the scales for those factors to attain better work status. Forty-five Japanese patients with schizophrenia and 111 healthy controls entered the study. Cognition, capacity for everyday activities, and social functioning were assessed by the Japanese versions of the MATRICS Cognitive Consensus Battery (MCCB), the UCSD Performance-based Skills Assessment-Brief (UPSA-B), and the Social Functioning Scale Individuals’ version modified for the MATRICS-PASS (Modified SFS for PASS), respectively. Potential factors for work outcome were estimated by multiple linear regression analyses (predicting work hours directly) and a multiple logistic regression analyses (predicting dichotomized work status based on work hours). ROC curve analyses were performed to determine cut-off points for differentiating between the better- and poor work status. The results showed that a cognitive component, comprising visual/verbal learning and emotional management, and a social functioning component, comprising independent living and vocational functioning, were potential factors for predicting work hours/status. Cut-off points obtained in ROC analyses indicated that 60–70% achievements on the measures of those factors were expected to maintain the better work status. Our findings suggest that improvement on specific aspects of cognitive and social functioning are important for work outcome in patients with schizophrenia.


      PubDate: 2015-09-12T08:46:33Z
       
  • El procesamiento temporal en la esquizofrenia: Revisión

    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 29 July 2015
      Source:Schizophrenia Research: Cognition
      Author(s): Irene Alústiza, Nuria Pujol, Patricio Molero, Felipe Ortuño
      We review the main contributions of the cognitive neuroscience literature in the field of time processing in schizophrenia. First, we summarize the theoretical concepts and terminology related to time and time estimation as well as the characterization of this deficit in the illness. Secondly, we deeply review the neuroanatomical basis of this deficit and its interaction with other cognitive processes and clinical symptoms. Thirdly, we specifically zoom into the main finding of studies which have analyzed temporal discrimination through cognitive tasks performed during functional neuroimaging. Resumen Esta revisión pretende mostrar al lector los principales hallazgos de la literatura neurocientífica y cognitiva sobre la temporalidad en la esquizofrenia. Realizaremos primero una breve introducción sobre aspectos teóricos y conceptuales para adentrarnos luego en la importancia de su alteración en este trastorno. Concretamente, las estructuras cerebrales subyacentes y la interacción que guarda con otras disfunciones cognitivas y síntomas psicopatológicos. Incluye diferentes estudios con un enfoque tanto conductual como neurocientífico, aunque especialmente se centra en las tareas de discriminación temporal en la escala de milisegundos y en los estudios que emplean técnicas de neuroimagen funcional.


      PubDate: 2015-08-03T03:26:43Z
       
  • Recuperación Clinica Pero No Cognitiva En Esquizofrenia A Traves De
           La Experiencia Del Cine De Ficcion

    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 1 August 2015
      Source:Schizophrenia Research: Cognition
      Author(s): J. Peña, P. Sánchez, E. Elizagárate, N. Ibarretxe-Bilbao, J. Ezcurra, L. Caballero, M. Margariños, I. García Del Castillo, M. Gutiérrez, N. Ojeda
      Introducción Una de las críticas que se hace a las técnicas de la rehabilitación es la limitada generalización a la vida cotidiana del paciente. El cine se ha empleado como herramienta de rehabilitación psiquiátrica en el pasado con el objetivo principal de facilitar el entrenamiento en habilidades sociales y de comunicación. En este estudio nos planteamos emplear el cine como herramienta de recuperación clínica, pero también como herramienta novedosa de recuperación cognitiva para trabajar adicionalmente comunicación y habilidades sociales y todos los procesos cognitivos básicos y de cognición social. Método En este ensayo clínico aleatorizado, 48 pacientes con esquizofrenia fueron asignados a un grupo experimental o control. Ambos grupos recibieron sesiones de tratamiento que incluían la visualización de capítulos de cine de la serie Los Soprano. Tras ello, el grupo experimental realizaba una sesión estructurada de entrenamiento cognitivo con preguntas y ejercicios basados en el capítulo de cine. Con la misma duración y frecuencia el grupo control realizaba una puesta común en voz alta sobre lo visto en el capítulo. Resultados Al final del tratamiento, el grupo experimental mejoró significativamente en síntomas clínicos tanto positivos como negativos en comparación con el grupo control. Sin embargo, esta mejoría no se observó en las funciones cognitivas ni básicas ni en cognición social. Discusión Una intervención breve basada en actividades de la vida diaria puede ser transformada en herramienta eficaz de rehabilitación psiquiátrica. Sin embargo, con las características actuales y en la muestra de este estudio, la misma intervención no aportó beneficios en parámetros de cognición.


      PubDate: 2015-08-03T03:26:43Z
       
  • Búsqueda De Nuevos Biomarcadores De La Cognición En
           Esquizofrenia

    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 26 July 2015
      Source:Schizophrenia Research: Cognition
      Author(s): R. Penadés, C. García-Rizo, C. Garcia-Rizo, M. Bioque, A. González-Rodríguez, B. Cabrera, G. Mezquida, M. Bernardo
      La búsqueda de biomarcadores en la cognición ha centrado una gran parte de las investigaciones en pacientes con esquizofrenia. La literatura científica es heterogénea y son escasos los estudios disponibles que permitan establecer un modelo integrador de la etiopatogenia y respuesta terapéutica basada en estos marcadores. En el presente trabajo nos proponemos revisar tres aspectos fundamentales correlacionados con el rendimiento cognitivo: 1) la relación entre cognición e inflamación en esquizofrenia, 2) el papel de la prolactina en la cognición, y 3) la asociación entre cognición y factores neurotróficos, en particular el BDNF. Numerosos estudios apoyan la asociación de diversos marcadores inflamatorios con el estado cognitivo en esquizofrenia. El desarrollo de terapias eficaces en el rendimiento cognitivo se ha centrado en las últimas décadas en la búsqueda de fármacos inmunomoduladores o antiinflamatorios. Por otro lado, se ha demostrado la implicación de la prolactina y su función en la cognición y transición a la psicosis, así como en el pronóstico y diagnóstico de la esquizofrenia con independencia del tratamiento antipsicótico. En cuanto a factores neurotróficos, un estudio reciente correlaciona los niveles de BDNF con la mejoría cognitiva en pacientes diagnosticados de esquizofrenia tratados con rehabilitación cognitiva. Concluimos que, a pesar de la diversidad de biomarcadores asociados con el estado cognitivo en esquizofrenia, el BDNF es el biomarcador que acumula mayor evidencia en la literatura científica actual.


      PubDate: 2015-07-28T20:48:33Z
       
  • Influencia del polimorfismo Val158Met COMT en el procesamiento de contexto
           en pacientes del espectro de la esquizofrenia y en sus familiares

    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 7 July 2015
      Source:Schizophrenia Research: Cognition
      Author(s): Pilar López-García , Leslie Young , Juan Marín , Patricio Molero , Felipe Ortuño
      Los niveles de dopamina en el cortex prefrontal parecen jugar un papel fundamental en las alteraciones cognitivas en la esquizofrenia. El polimorfismo Val158Met de la enzima COMT (catecol-o-metiltransferasa) influye en la disponibilidad de dopamina en el cortex prefrontal y por tanto puede influir en el funcionamiento cognitivo. Entre los déficits cognitivos presentes en la esquizofrenia, se ha descrito el déficit de procesamiento de contexto como un rasgo específico de la esquizofrenia, cuyo sustrato cerebral parece encontrarse en el cortex prefrontal dorsolateral. En este estudio nos proponemos estudiar la influencia del polimorfismo Val158Met COMT en el procesamiento de contexto evaluado mediante el test DPX (Dot Probe Expectancy Task) en una muestra de pacientes del espectro de la esquizofrenia, sus familiares y en controles sanos. Métodos: 40 pacientes del espectro de la esquizofrenia, 26 familiares y 63 controles sanos fueron genotipados y realizaron el test DPX. Resultados: Tanto en pacientes como en familiares existe un déficit de procesamiento de contexto que está influido por el polimorfismo Val158Met COMT. Los sujetos val/val presentaban peor rendimiento en el procesamiento de contexto que el resto de los sujetos. Conclusiones: Los déficits de procesamiento de contexto en la esquizofrenia y en sus familiares están influenciados por el polimorfismo funcional Val158Met COMT, probablemente como una consecuencia de una menor disponibilidad de dopamina en el córtex prefrontal.


      PubDate: 2015-07-08T13:46:53Z
       
  • The concept of schizotypy — A computational anatomy perspective

    • Abstract: Publication date: June 2015
      Source:Schizophrenia Research: Cognition, Volume 2, Issue 2
      Author(s): C. Modenato , B. Draganski
      Despite major progress in diagnostic accuracy and symptomatic treatment of mental disorders, there is an ongoing debate about their classification aiming to follow current advances in neurobiology. The main goal of this review is to provide a comprehensive summary of the put forward schizotypy concept that follows the needs for objective assessment of schizophrenia-like personality traits in the general population. We focus on major achievements in the field from the perspective of magnetic resonance imaging-based computational anatomy of the brain. Particular interest is devoted to overlapping brain structure findings in schizotypy and schizophrenia to promote a dimensional view on schizophrenia as extension of phenotype traits in the non-clinical general population.


      PubDate: 2015-06-23T16:46:52Z
       
  • Does chronic nicotine consumption influence visual backward masking in
           schizophrenia and schizotypy'

    • Abstract: Publication date: June 2015
      Source:Schizophrenia Research: Cognition, Volume 2, Issue 2
      Author(s): Albulena Shaqiri , Julie Willemin , Guillaume Sierro , Maya Roinishvili , Luisa Iannantuoni , Linda Rürup , Eka Chkonia , Michael H. Herzog , Christine Mohr
      Nicotine consumption is higher for people within the schizophrenia spectrum compared to controls. This observation supports the self-medication hypothesis, that nicotine relieves symptoms in, for example, schizophrenia patients. We tested whether performance in an endophenotype of schizophrenia (visual backward masking, VBM) is modulated by nicotine consumption in i) smoking and non-smoking schizophrenia patients, their first-degree relatives, and age-matched controls, ii) non-smoking and smoking university students, and iii) non-smoking, early and late onset nicotine smokers. Overall, our results confirmed that VBM deficits are an endophenotype of schizophrenia, i.e., deficits were highest in patients, followed by their relatives, students scoring high in Cognitive Disorganisation, and controls. Moreover, we found i) beneficial effects of chronic nicotine consumption on VBM performance, in particular with increasing age, and ii) little impact of clinical status alone or in interaction with nicotine consumption on VBM performance. Given the younger age of undergraduate students (up to 30years) versus controls and patients (up to 66years), we propose that age-dependent VBM deficits emerge when schizotypy effects are targeted in populations of a larger age range, but that nicotine consumption might counteract these deficits (supporting the self-medication hypothesis).


      PubDate: 2015-06-23T16:46:52Z
       
  • A vision science perspective on schizophrenia

    • Abstract: Publication date: June 2015
      Source:Schizophrenia Research: Cognition, Volume 2, Issue 2
      Author(s): Steven M. Silverstein , Judy L. Thompson



      PubDate: 2015-06-23T16:46:52Z
       
  • Insight and subjective measures of quality of life in chronic
           schizophrenia

    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 9 June 2015
      Source:Schizophrenia Research: Cognition
      Author(s): Cynthia O. Siu , Philip D. Harvey , Ofer Agid , Mary Waye , Carla Brambilla , Wing-Kit Choi , Gary Remington
      Lack of insight is a well-established phenomenon in schizophrenia, and has been associated with reduced rater-assessed functional performance but increased self-reported well-being in previous studies. The objective of this study was to examine factors that might influence insight (as assessed by the Insight and Treatment Attitudes Questionnaire [ITAQ] or PANSS item G12) and subjective quality-of-life (as assessed by Lehman QoL Interview [LQOLI]), using the large National Institute of Mental Health Clinical Antipsychotic Trials of Intervention Effectiveness (CATIE) dataset. Uncooperativeness was assessed by PANSS item G8 (“Uncooperativeness”). In the analysis, we found significant moderating effects for insight on the relationships of subjective life satisfaction assessment to symptom severity (as assessed by CGI-S score), objective everyday functioning (as assessed by rater-administered Heinrichs–Carpenter Quality of Life scale), clinically rated uncooperativeness (as assessed by PANSS G8), and discontinuation of treatment for all causes (all P<0.05 for statistical interaction between insight and subject QoL). Patients with chronic schizophrenia who reported being "pleased" or "delighted" on LQOLI were found to have significantly lower neurocognitive reasoning performance and poorer insight (ITAQ total score). Our findings underscore the importance of reducing cognitive and insight impairments for both treatment compliance and improved functional outcomes.


      PubDate: 2015-06-10T12:51:23Z
       
  • Investigating vision in schizophrenia through responses to humorous
           stimuli

    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 27 May 2015
      Source:Schizophrenia Research: Cognition
      Author(s): Wolfgang Tschacher , Ruth Genner , Jana Bryjová , Elisabeth Schaller , Andrea C. Samson
      The visual environment of humans contains abundant ambiguity and fragmentary information. Therefore, an early step of vision must disambiguate the incessant stream of information. Humorous stimuli produce a situation that is strikingly analogous to this process: Funniness is associated with the incongruity contained in a joke, pun, or cartoon. Like in vision in general, appreciating a visual pun as funny necessitates disambiguation of incongruous information. Therefore, perceived funniness of visual puns was implemented to study visual perception in a sample of 36 schizophrenia patients and 56 healthy control participants. We found that both visual incongruity and Theory of Mind (ToM) content of the puns were associated with increased experienced funniness. This was significantly less so in participants with schizophrenia, consistent with the gestalt hypothesis of schizophrenia, which would predict compromised perceptual organization in patients. The association of incongruity with funniness was not mediated by known predictors of humor appreciation, such as affective state, depression, or extraversion. Patients with higher excitement symptoms and, at a trend level, reduced cognitive symptoms, reported lower funniness experiences. An open question remained whether patients showed this deficiency of visual incongruity detection independent of their ToM deficiency. Humorous stimuli may be viewed as a convenient method to study perceptual processes, but also fundamental questions of higher-level cognition.


      PubDate: 2015-05-29T10:51:11Z
       
  • Schizophrenia patients and 22q11.2 deletion syndrome adolescents at risk
           express the same deviant patterns of resting state EEG microstates: A
           candidate endophenotype of schizophrenia

    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 27 May 2015
      Source:Schizophrenia Research: Cognition
      Author(s): Miralena I. Tomescu , Tonia A. Rihs , Maya Roinishvili , F. Isik Karahanoglu , Maude Schneider , Sarah Menghetti , Dimitri Van De Ville , Andreas Brand , Eka Chkonia , Stephan Eliez , Michael H. Herzog , Christoph M. Michel , Céline Cappe
      Schizophrenia is a complex psychiatric disorder and many of the factors contributing to its pathogenesis are poorly understood. In addition, identifying reliable neurophysiological markers would improve diagnosis and early identification of this disease. The 22q11.2 deletion syndrome (22q11DS) is one major risk factor for schizophrenia. Here, we show further evidence that deviant temporal dynamics of EEG microstates are a potential neurophysiological marker by showing that the resting state patterns of 22q11DS are similar to those found in schizophrenia patients. The EEG microstates are recurrent topographic distributions of the ongoing scalp potential fields with temporal stability of around 80ms that are mapping the fast reconfiguration of resting state networks. Five minutes of high-density EEG recordings was analysed from 27 adult chronic schizophrenia patients, 27 adult controls, 30 adolescents with 22q11DS, and 28 adolescent controls. In both patient groups we found increased class C, but decreased class D presence and high transition probabilities towards the class C microstates. Moreover, these aberrant temporal dynamics in the two patient groups were also expressed by perturbations of the long-range dependency of the EEG microstates. These findings point to a deficient function of the salience and attention resting state networks in schizophrenia and 22q11DS as class C and class D microstates were previously associated with these networks, respectively. These findings elucidate similarities between individuals at risk and schizophrenia patients and support the notion that abnormal temporal patterns of EEG microstates might constitute a marker for developing schizophrenia.


      PubDate: 2015-05-29T10:51:11Z
       
  • Intermittent degradation and schizotypy

    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 21 May 2015
      Source:Schizophrenia Research: Cognition
      Author(s): Matthew W. Roché , Steven M. Silverstein , Mark F. Lenzenweger
      Intermittent degradation refers to transient detrimental disruptions in task performance. This phenomenon has been repeatedly observed in the performance data of patients with schizophrenia. Whether intermittent degradation is a feature of the liability for schizophrenia (i.e., schizotypy) is an open question. Further, the specificity of intermittent degradation to schizotypy has yet to be investigated. To address these questions, 92 undergraduate participants completed a battery of self-report questionnaires assessing schizotypy and psychological state variables (e.g., anxiety, depression), and their reaction times were recorded as they did so. Intermittent degradation was defined as the number of times a subject’s reaction time for questionnaire items met or exceeded three standard deviations from his or her mean reaction time after controlling for each item’s information processing load. Intermittent degradation scores were correlated with questionnaire scores. Our results indicate that intermittent degradation is associated with total scores on measures of positive and disorganized schizotypy, but unrelated to total scores on measures of negative schizotypy and psychological state variables. Intermittent degradation is interpreted as potentially derivative of schizotypy and a candidate endophenotypic marker worthy of continued research.


      PubDate: 2015-05-25T09:22:06Z
       
  • Meeting overview: Sensory perception and schizophrenia, Lausanne,
           Switzerland June 31–July 1, 2014

    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 21 May 2015
      Source:Schizophrenia Research: Cognition
      Author(s): Daniel C. Javitt
      Schizophrenia is increasingly being viewed as a “whole brain” disorder with deficits affecting widespread cortical and subcortical networks. Within this context, studies of visual cortical function may be particularly important both because visual processing deficits directly affect social and occupational function and because these systems are well characterized at the basic science level, permitting informative translational research. This article summarizes a conference on visual processing dysfunction in schizophrenia held in Lausanne, Switzerland from June 30 to July 1, 2014 and introduces this special issue. Speakers focused on multiple aspects of visual dysfunction in schizophrenia using behavioral, neurophysiological and fMRI-based approaches. Four main themes emerged. First was a focus on response disturbances within the early visual system, using paradigms such as sensory EEG and MEG-based responses. Second, behavioral deficits were noted in processing related to local interaction within visual regions, using paradigms such as Vernier acuity or contour integration. These deficits provided potential model systems to understand impaired connectivity within the brain in schizophrenia more generally. Third, several visual measures were found to correlate highly with symptoms and/or neurocognitive processing. Deficits in contour integration, for example, correlated highly with conceptual disorganization, whereas perceptual instability correlated with delusion formation. These findings highlight links between perceptual-level disturbance and clinical manifestation. Finally, the potential involvement of specific neurotransmitter receptors, including N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA)-type glutamate receptors and alpha7 nicotinic receptors were discussed as potential etiological mechanisms. Overall, the meeting highlighted the contributions of visual pathway dysfunction to the etiopathogenesis of neurocognitive dysfunction in schizophrenia.


      PubDate: 2015-05-25T09:22:06Z
       
  • Theory of mind, emotion recognition and social perception in individuals
           at clinical high risk for psychosis: Findings from the NAPLS-2 cohort

    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 16 May 2015
      Source:Schizophrenia Research: Cognition
      Author(s): Mariapaola Barbato , Lu Liu , Kristin S. Cadenhead , Tyrone D. Cannon , Barbara A. Cornblatt , Thomas H. McGlashan , Diana O. Perkins , Larry J. Seidman , Ming T. Tsuang , Elaine F. Walker , Scott W. Woods , Carrie E. Bearden , Daniel H. Mathalon , Robert Heinssen , Jean Addington
      Social cognition, the mental operations that underlie social interactions, is a major construct to investigate in schizophrenia. Impairments in social cognition are present before the onset of psychosis, and even in unaffected first-degree relatives, suggesting that social cognition may be a trait marker of the illness. In a large cohort of individuals at clinical high risk for psychosis (CHR) and healthy controls, three domains of social cognition (theory of mind, facial emotion recognition and social perception) were assessed to clarify which domains are impaired in this population. Six-hundred and seventy-five CHR individuals and 264 controls, who were part of the multi-site North American Prodromal Longitudinal Study, completed The Awareness of Social Inference Test, the Penn Emotion Recognition task, the Penn Emotion Differentiation task, and the Relationship Across Domains, measures of theory of mind, facial emotion recognition, and social perception, respectively. Social cognition was not related to positive and negative symptom severity, but was associated with age and IQ. CHR individuals demonstrated poorer performance on all measures of social cognition. However, after controlling for age and IQ, the group differences remained significant for measures of theory of mind and social perception, but not for facial emotion recognition. Theory of mind and social perception are impaired in individuals at CHR for psychosis. Age and IQ seem to play an important role in the arising of deficits in facial affect recognition. Future studies should examine the stability of social cognition deficits over time and their role, if any, in the development of psychosis.


      PubDate: 2015-05-19T08:17:28Z
       
  • Visual masking &amp; schizophrenia

    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 8 May 2015
      Source:Schizophrenia Research: Cognition
      Author(s): Michael H. Herzog , Andreas Brand
      Visual masking is a frequently used tool in schizophrenia research. Visual masking has a very high sensitivity and specificity and masking paradigms have been proven to be endophenotypes. Whereas masking is a powerful technique to study schizophrenia, the underlying mechanisms are discussed controversially. For example, for more than 25 years, masking deficits of schizophrenia patients were mainly attributed to a deficient magno-cellular system (M-system). Here, we show that there is very little evidence that masking deficits are magno-cellular deficits. We will discuss the magno-cellular and other approaches in detail and highlight their pros and cons.


      PubDate: 2015-05-10T05:59:52Z
       
  • Disruption of information processing in schizophrenia: The time
           perspective

    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 8 May 2015
      Source:Schizophrenia Research: Cognition
      Author(s): Anne Giersch , Patrick E. Poncelet , Rémi L. Capa , Brice Martin , Céline Z. Duval , Maxime Curzietti , Marc Hoonacker , Mitsouko van Assche , Laurence Lalanne
      We review studies suggesting time disorders on both automatic and subjective levels in patients with schizophrenia. Patients have difficulty explicitly discriminating between simultaneous and asynchronous events, and ordering events in time. We discuss the relationship between these difficulties and impairments on a more elementary level. We showed that for undetectable stimulus onset asynchronies below 20ms, neither patients nor controls merge events in time, as previously believed. On the contrary, subjects implicitly distinguish between events even when evaluating them to be simultaneous. Furthermore, controls privilege the last stimulus, whereas patients seem to stay stuck on the first stimulus when asynchronies are sub-threshold. Combining previous results shows this to be true for patients even for asynchronies as short as 8ms. Moreover, this peculiarity predicts difficulties with detecting asynchronies longer than 50ms, suggesting an impact on the conscious ability to time events. Difficulties on the subjective level are also correlated with clinical disorganization. The results are interpreted within the framework of predictive coding which can account for an implicit ability to update events. These results complement a range of other results, by suggesting a difficulty with binding information in time as well as space, and by showing that information processing lacks continuity and stability in patients. The time perspective may help bridge the gap between cognitive impairments and clinical symptoms, by showing how the innermost structure of thought and experience is disrupted.


      PubDate: 2015-05-10T05:59:52Z
       
  • Cognitive deficits characterization using the CogState Research Battery in
           first-episode psychosis patients

    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 6 May 2015
      Source:Schizophrenia Research: Cognition
      Author(s): Audrey Benoit , Ashok K. Malla , Srividya N. Iyer , Ridha Joober , Louis Bherer , Martin Lepage
      The computer-based CogState Research Battery (CSRB) proposes a test structure which follows MATRICS recommended cognitive domains but lacks direct comparison to pen and paper batteries in first-episode psychosis (FEP). The aim of this study was to compare performances obtained with the CSRB and a pen and paper battery in a historical cohort of FEP patients. Among patients entering an early intervention program between 2003 and 2014, separate cohorts completed the traditional pen and paper cognitive battery (n=182) and the CSRB (n=97). Composite z-scores were derived using normative data of matched controls (n=64 pen and paper, n=69 CSRB) and were compared between the two batteries for the 7 cognitive domains. The cohort tested using the CSRB performed better on the domains of processing speed, attention, visual memory, and verbal memory than the cohort tested using the pen and paper battery (all p <0.001). Performance did not differ between the two types of batteries for the working memory, executive functions, and social cognition domains. Cognitive profiles identified in the two patient cohorts were similar, with verbal memory being the most impaired domain. Better performances on the CSRB may be primarily due to the minimal demand of the computerized tests on graphomotor abilities and reading speed compared to the pen and paper tests. Our investigation offers a better understanding on how the results obtained with computerized batteries may compare to earlier work done with traditional tests.


      PubDate: 2015-05-10T05:59:52Z
       
  • Cognitive Performance associated to functional outcomes in stable
           outpatients with schizophrenia

    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 14 April 2015
      Source:Schizophrenia Research: Cognition
      Author(s): Silvia Zaragoza Domingo , Julio Bobes , Maria-Paz García-Portilla , Claudia Morralla
      Background–objective Prevalence data of cognitive impairment in Schizophrenia based on large population samples are scarce. Our goal is to relate cognition and functional outcomes, and estimate prevalence of cognitive impairment in a large sample of schizophrenia outpatients treated with second-generation antipsychotics. Method A cross-sectional outpatient evaluation conducted during follow-up visits. Selection criteria included six-months stable treatment. The brief battery, EPICOG-SCH, covered four cognitive domains related to functional outcomes: working memory (WAIS-III-Letter-Number-Sequencing), executive function (Category Fluency Test; CFT), verbal memory (WMS-III-Logical-Memory), and information processing speed (Digit-Symbol-Coding and CFT). Clinical severity and functional impairment were assessed with CGI-SCH and WHO DAS-S. Impairment prevalence was calculated at ≤1.5 SD. Results Among patients recruited (n =848) in 234 participating centers, 672 were under 6-month treatment. 61.5% (n =413) reported cognitive impairment according to CGI-SCH Cognitive Subscale. Estimated prevalences were 85.9% (95% CI 85.6–86.2%) CFT-Fruits; 68.3% (95% CI 67.8–68.8%) CFT-Animals; 38.1% (95% CI 37.5–38.3%) Digit-Symbol-Coding; 24.8% (95% CI 24.1–25.5%) Verbal Memory-Units; 20.9% (95% CI 20.2–21.6%) Letter-Number Sequencing; 11.7% (95% CI 11.0–12.4%) Verbal Memory-Items. Negative and Depressive symptoms, Deficit Syndrome, and functional disability were related to poor performance. Functional disability was predicted by CGI-SCH-Overall severity (OR=1.34635, p<0.0001), CGI-SCH-Negative Symptoms (OR=0.75540, p<0.0001), working memory (Letter-Number-Sequencing) (OR=−0.16442, p=0.0004) and the time-course (OR=0.05083, p=0.0094), explaining 47% of the observed variability. Conclusion Most prevalent impairments were on executive function and processing speed domains; however, working memory showed the strongest relationship to functional disability. Monitoring cognitive function during follow up is critical to understand patient’s everyday functional capacity.


      PubDate: 2015-04-15T03:17:04Z
       
  • Perceptual instability in schizophrenia: Probing predictive coding
           accounts of delusions with ambiguous stimuli

    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 7 April 2015
      Source:Schizophrenia Research: Cognition
      Author(s): Katharina Schmack , Alexandra Schnack , Josef Priller , Philipp Sterzer
      Background Delusions, a core symptom of schizophrenia, are thought to arise from an alteration in predictive coding mechanisms that underlie perceptual inference. Here, we aimed to empirically test the hypothesized link between delusions and perceptual inference. Method 28 patients with schizophrenia and 32 healthy controls matched for age and gender took part in a behavioral experiment that assessed the influence of stabilizing predictions on perception of an ambiguous visual stimulus. Results Participants with schizophrenia exhibited a weaker tendency towards percept stabilization during intermittent viewing of the ambiguous stimulus compared to healthy controls. The tendency towards percept stabilization in participants with schizophrenia correlated negatively with delusional ideation as measured with a validated questionnaire. Conclusion Our results indicate an association between a weakened effect of sensory predictions in perceptual inference and delusions in schizophrenia. We suggest that attenuated predictive signaling during perceptual inference in schizophrenia may yield the experience of aberrant salience, thereby providing the starting point for the formation of delusions.


      PubDate: 2015-04-10T02:51:22Z
       
  • Hierarchical Classes Analysis (HICLAS): A novel data reduction method to
           examine associations between biallelic SNPs and perceptual organization
           phenotypes in schizophrenia

    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 7 April 2015
      Source:Schizophrenia Research: Cognition
      Author(s): Jamie Joseph , Michael A. Gara , Steven M. Silverstein
      The power of SNP association studies to detect valid relationships with clinical phenotypes in schizophrenia is largely limited by the number of SNPs selected and non-specificity of phenotypes. To address this, we first assessed performance on two visual perceptual organization tasks designed to avoid many generalized deficit confounds, Kanizsa shape perception and contour integration, in a schizophrenia patient sample. Then, to reduce the total number of candidate SNPs analyzed in association with perceptual organization phenotypes, we employed a two-stage strategy: first a priori SNPs from three candidate genes were selected (GAD1, NRG1 and DTNBP1); then a Hierarchical Classes Analysis (HICLAS) was performed to reduce the total number of SNPs, based on statistically related SNP clusters. HICLAS reduced the total number of candidate SNPs for subsequent phenotype association analyses from 6 to 3. MANCOVAs indicated that rs10503929 and rs1978340 were associated with the Kanizsa shape perception filling in metric but not the global shape detection metric. rs10503929 was also associated with altered contour integration performance. SNPs not selected by the HICLAS model were unrelated to perceptual phenotype indices. While the contribution of candidate SNPs to perceptual impairments requires further clarification, this study reports the first application of HICLAS as a hypothesis-independent mathematical method for SNP data reduction. HICLAS may be useful for future larger scale genotype-phenotype association studies.


      PubDate: 2015-04-10T02:51:22Z
       
  • Schizophrenia and the eye

    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 7 April 2015
      Source:Schizophrenia Research: Cognition
      Author(s): Steven M. Silverstein , Richard Rosen
      Although visual processing impairments are common in schizophrenia, it is not clear to what extent these originate in the eye vs. the brain. This review highlights potential contributions, from the retina and other structures of the eye, to visual processing impairments in schizophrenia and high-risk states. A second goal is to evaluate the status of retinal abnormalities as biomarkers for schizophrenia. The review was motivated by known retinal changes in other disorders (e.g., Parkinson’s disease, multiple sclerosis), and their relationships to perceptual and cognitive impairments, and disease progression therein. The evidence reviewed suggests two major conclusions. One is that there are multiple structural and functional disturbances of the eye in schizophrenia, all of which could be factors in the visual disturbances of patients. These include retinal venule widening, retinal nerve fiber layer thinning, dopaminergic abnormalities, abnormal ouput of retinal cells as measured by electroretinography (ERG), maculopathies and retinopathies, cataracts, poor acuity, and strabismus. Some of these are likely to be illness-related, whereas others may be due to medication or comorbid conditions. The second conclusion is that certain retinal findings can serve as biomarkers of neural pathology, and disease progression, in schizophrenia. The strongest evidence for this to date involves findings of widened retinal venules, thinning of the retinal nerve fiber layer, and abnormal ERG amplitudes. These data suggest that a greater understanding of the contribution of retinal and other ocular pathology to the visual and cognitive disturbances of schizophrenia is warranted, and that retinal changes have untapped clinical utility.


      PubDate: 2015-04-10T02:51:22Z
       
  • Specificity of facial emotion recognition impairments in patients with
           multi-episode schizophrenia

    • Abstract: Publication date: March 2015
      Source:Schizophrenia Research: Cognition, Volume 2, Issue 1
      Author(s): Emile Barkhof , Leo M.J. de Sonneville , Carin J. Meijer , Lieuwe de Haan
      Background Patients with schizophrenia show impairments in social information processing, such as recognising facial emotions and face identity. Goal The aim of this study was to explore whether these impairments represent specific deficits or are part of a more general cognitive dysfunction. Method Forty-two patients with schizophrenia and 42 matched controls were compared on facial emotion and face identity recognition versus (non-social) abstract pattern recognition, using three tasks of the Amsterdam Neuropsychological Tasks (ANT) program. Results Patients were slower than controls in social information processing as well as in (non-social) abstract pattern recognition. Patients were also less accurate than controls in processing social information, but not in recognition of abstract patterns. Differences between patients and controls were most substantial for facial emotion recognition compared to both face identity recognition (speed) and non-social pattern recognition (speed and accuracy). Finally, differences between patients and controls were largest for the recognition of negative emotions. Conclusion Compared to controls patients with schizophrenia displayed more difficulties in processing of social information compared to non-social information. These results support the hypothesis that facial emotion recognition impairment is a relatively distinct entity within the domain of cognitive dysfunction in schizophrenia.


      PubDate: 2015-04-04T02:10:58Z
       
  • Editorial

    • Abstract: Publication date: March 2015
      Source:Schizophrenia Research: Cognition, Volume 2, Issue 1
      Author(s): Philip D. Harvey



      PubDate: 2015-04-04T02:10:58Z
       
  • Neurocognitive deficits are relevant for the jumping-to-conclusions bias,
           but not for delusions: A longitudinal study

    • Abstract: Publication date: March 2015
      Source:Schizophrenia Research: Cognition, Volume 2, Issue 1
      Author(s): Christina Andreou , Brooke C. Schneider , Ryan Balzan , Daniel Luedecke , Daniela Roesch-Ely , Steffen Moritz
      Patients with delusions exhibit an increased tendency to arrive at decisions based on very limited evidence (jumping-to-conclusions; JTC), making this reasoning bias relevant for the treatment of delusions. Neurocognitive deficits contribute to JTC, but it is not known whether this has any bearing on the clinical syndrome of delusions. We addressed this question by reanalyzing data from an efficacy study of non-pharmacological interventions as adjunctive treatments in schizophrenia. We investigated the longitudinal associations of cognitive functioning, JTC and delusions in patients with psychotic disorders receiving either a metacognitive intervention addressing reasoning biases (n=59), or cognitive remediation (n=58). Both interventions improved JTC; in the cognitive remediation group, tentative evidence suggested that better neurocognitive performance contributed to this improvement. However, JTC gains were associated with delusion improvement only in the metacognitive intervention group, suggesting a content-specific mechanism of action.


      PubDate: 2015-04-04T02:10:58Z
       
  • Insight and illness perception in Mexican patients with psychosis

    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 5 March 2015
      Source:Schizophrenia Research: Cognition
      Author(s): Lizzette Gómez-de-Regil
      Background Insight and illness perception are two concepts of interest in the study of factors related to clinical outcome in patients with psychosis. Insight implies a risk of emotional distress for the patient. Illness perceptions, regardless of their accuracy, might be favorable or not to illness. Literature provides evidence of significant correlates of these factors with clinical outcome, but they are rarely included in a single study. Objectives 1) assessing insight and illness perception in a sample of Mexican patients who have experienced psychosis and, 2) analyzing how insight and illness perception relate to each other and how they relate to clinical status (i.e., positive, negative, and general psychopathology, depression, and anxiety). Methods Sixty-one participants (55.7% females) were recruited from a public psychiatric hospital; insight and illness perceptions were assessed with the SUMD and the Brief-IPQ, respectively. Clinical status was assessed with the PANSS, CDS and BAI scales. Results Participants showed good insight, favorable illness perceptions for the cognitive and comprehension dimensions, but unfavorable for the emotional dimension. Clinical status of sample was characterized by mild symptoms. Poor insight related to positive symptoms and general psychopathology. Cognitive and emotional perceptions of illness were significantly associated to most clinical status parameters, whereas comprehension showed no significant results. Conclusions The study not only replicates the significant association on insight and illness perception with clinical outcome, but shows how their patterns of interactions are different, reinforcing the idea that they are two distinct factors worthy of being habitually acknowledged in research and clinical practice.


      PubDate: 2015-03-09T00:03:12Z
       
  • Smoking in schizophrenia: cognitive impact of nicotine and relationship to
           smoking motivators

    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 28 January 2015
      Source:Schizophrenia Research: Cognition
      Author(s): Alison K. Beck , Amanda L. Baker , Juanita Todd
      Smoking prevalence in schizophrenia is significantly elevated relative to other clinical and to non-clinical groups. The cognitive self-medication hypothesis attributes this to the beneficial effects of nicotine on illness-related cognitive deficits. Significant effects of nicotine have been observed on visual spatial working memory (VSWM), sustained attention (Continuous Performance Test — Identical Pairs; CPT-IP) and prepulse inhibition (PPI). It remains unclear whether these neurophysiological and neurocognitive effects of nicotine influence self-reported smoking motivation. To explore the relationship between nicotine effects on cognition and self-reported smoking motivation in schizophrenia and non-psychiatric control smokers, the impact of smoking abstinence and reinstatement was examined across three cognitive indices (VSWM, CPT-IP, PPI) and compared to self-reported smoking motivation (Modified Reasons for Smoking Scale revised to include ‘cognitive motivators’). Cognitive function was assessed after ‘typical’ smoking and overnight abstinence. Schizophrenia smokers (but not controls) demonstrated significantly less error on the VSWM task in the smoking relative to abstinent condition. Control (but not schizophrenia) smokers, showed evidence of CPT-IP improvement in the smoking relative to abstinent condition. The overall profile of smoking motivation was comparable between groups. However, significant relationships between subjective and objective indices of smoking related cognitive change were observed for controls. Differential effects of nicotine on cognition have been hypothesised to influence the pattern and persistence of smoking in schizophrenia. These preliminary findings indicate that evidence for such effects is apparent even in small samples — particularly for VSWM. This is the first study to show that neurocognitive effects of smoking may influence self-reported smoking motivation.


      PubDate: 2015-02-03T23:01:36Z
       
  • Social cognition in patients with schizophrenia spectrum and bipolar
           disorders with and without psychotic features

    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 2 February 2015
      Source:Schizophrenia Research: Cognition
      Author(s): George C. Nitzburg , Katherine E. Burdick , Anil K. Malhotra , Pamela DeRosse
      Background Social cognition may be critical to the impoverished social functioning seen in serious mental illness. However, although social-cognitive deficits are consistently demonstrated in schizophrenia spectrum disorders (SSD), studies in bipolar disorder (BD) have produced inconsistent results. This inconsistency may relate to symptom profiles of patients studied, particularly the presence or absence of psychotic features. Thus, we examined social cognition in bipolar disorder with psychotic features (BD+) versus without psychotic features (BD−) relative to SSD and controls. Methods A sample of 537 SSD patients, 85 BD+ patients, 37 BD− patients, and 309 controls were administered the MATRICS Consensus Cognitive Battery, including a social cognition measure, the managing emotions branch of the Mayer–Salovey–Caruso Emotional Intelligence Test (MSCEIT). Analyses of covariance compared MSCEIT performance between diagnostic groups while controlling for race, psychotropic medication status, and neurocognition. Results SSD but not BD− or BD+ patients showed significant MSCEIT deficits relative to controls. Conclusions MSCEIT deficits were found in SSD but not BD− or BD+, suggesting that social cognition may represent an underlying difference between SSD and BD. However, variance in MSCEIT performance among BD patients may also suggest latent BD subgroups characterized by social-cognitive deficits. Findings can help inform future investigations into how social cognition and social brain development differ between SSD and BD.


      PubDate: 2015-02-03T23:01:36Z
       
  • UCSD Performance-Based Skills Assessment (UPSA): validation of a Brazilian
           version in patients with schizophrenia

    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 20 January 2015
      Source:Schizophrenia Research: Cognition
      Author(s): Lucas M. Mantovani , João P. Machado-de-Sousa , João V. Salgado
      The UCSD Performance-based Skills Assessment (UPSA) is a measure of Functional Capacity and assesses skills involved in community tasks. It has good psychometrics properties, and is currently recommended as a co-primary assessment of cognition in the MATRICS Project. To our knowledge so far, there are no studies in western developing countries concerning Functional Capacity in Schizophrenia. The aims of this study were to translate, culturally adapt and validate the UPSA to assess Functional Capacity in community-dwelling patients with Schizophrenia living in Brazil. Eighty-two subjects (52 patients, 30 controls) were evaluated using: the Brazilian version of the UPSA (UPSA-1-BR), PANSS, Personal and Social Performance (PSP) and Global Assessment of Functioning (GAF). In the reliability test, UPSA-1-BR showed good Internal Consistency (Cronbach’s alpha of 0.88) and strong correlation between test and retest (4-month gap; r = 0.91; p < 0.01). Spearman’s rho values showed a moderate correlation between UPSA-1-BR and both PSP (0.50; p < 0.01) and GAF (0.46; p < 0.01) scores. UPSA-1-BR is capable of differentiating people with and without Schizophrenia. Patients scored lower than controls (58.9 versus 79.1), with an AUC of 0.79 (95%IC: 0.69–0.89). Sensitivity and specificity values of 0.71 and 0.70, respectively, were found in the cut-off point of 73.5, for separation of patients and controls, with predictive values of 80% (positive) and 58% (negative). UPSA-B-BR was also evaluated. UPSA-1-BR and its brief version presented adequate psychometric properties and proved to be valid and reliable instruments in the assessment of Functional Capacity in subjects with Schizophrenia.


      PubDate: 2015-01-23T22:06:51Z
       
 
 
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