Decreased resting-state interhemispheric coordination in first-episode, drug-naive paranoid schizophrenia

Wenbin Guo, Changqing Xiao, Guiying Liu, Sarah C Wooderson, Zhikun Zhang, Jian Zhang, Liuyu Yu, Jianrong Liu
Progress in Neuro-psychopharmacology & Biological Psychiatry 2014 January 3, 48: 14-9

BACKGROUND: Dysconnectivity hypothesis posits that schizophrenia relates to abnormalities in neuronal connectivity. However, little is known about the alterations of the interhemispheric resting-state functional connectivity (FC) in patients with paranoid schizophrenia. In the present study, we used a newly developed voxel-mirrored homotopic connectivity (VMHC) method to investigate the interhemispheric FC of the whole brain in patients with paranoid schizophrenia at rest.

METHODS: Forty-nine first-episode, drug-naive patients with paranoid schizophrenia and 50 age-, gender-, and education-matched healthy subjects underwent a resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) scans. An automated VMHC approach was used to analyze the data.

RESULTS: Patients exhibited lower VMHC than healthy subjects in the precuneus (PCu), the precentral gyrus, the superior temporal gyrus (STG), the middle occipital gyrus (MOG), and the fusiform gyrus/cerebellum lobule VI. No region showed greater VMHC in the patient group than in the control group. Significantly negative correlation was observed between VMHC in the precentral gyrus and the PANSS positive/total scores, and between VMHC in the STG and the PANSS positive/negative/total scores.

CONCLUSIONS: Our results suggest that interhemispheric resting-state FC of VMHC is reduced in paranoid schizophrenia with clinical implications for psychiatric symptomatology thus further contribute to the dysconnectivity hypothesis of schizophrenia.

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