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Eur Neuropsychopharmacol. 2010 Jul;20(7):454-8. doi: 10.1016/j.euroneuro.2010.02.009. Epub 2010 Mar 15.

Cigarette smoking and progressive brain volume loss in schizophrenia.

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  • 1Rudolf Magnus Institute of Neuroscience, Department of Psychiatry, University Medical Centre Utrecht, The Netherlands.


It is unknown whether the reported brain loss in schizophrenia can be attributed to the effects of tobacco smoking. 96 Patients (54 smokers/42 non-smokers) and 113 control subjects (35/78) were included in a 5-year longitudinal MRI study. Despite the higher prevalence of smoking behavior and the higher number of cigarettes consumed per day in the patients, cigarette smoking did not explain the excessive cerebral (gray matter) volume decreases in the patients. Moreover, smoking was not associated with brain volume change over time in the healthy subjects. However, extremely heavy smoking may contribute to excessive gray matter volume loss in schizophrenia.

Copyright 2010 Elsevier B.V. and ECNP. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

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