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Neuroscience. 2011 Jan 13;172:419-26. doi: 10.1016/j.neuroscience.2010.10.039. Epub 2010 Oct 30.

Schizophrenia patients show augmented spatial frame illusion for visual and visuomotor tasks.

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  • 1Mailman Research Center, McLean Hospital, Department of Psychiatry, Harvard Medical School 115 Mill Street, Belmont, MA 02478, USA. ychen@mclean.harvard.edu

Abstract

Previous research has identified several key processes of visual perception and visually guided action that are implicated in schizophrenia. Yet, it is not well understood whether similar or different brain mechanisms mediate the abnormalities in these two processes. To explore this issue, we examined visual and visuomotor processing in schizophrenia, utilizing an illusion known as the Roelofs effect. This illusion refers to the spatial mislocalization of an object within an off-centered frame, with the object appearing to be shifted towards the opposite direction of the frame offset. In this study, localization of the object was measured either by a direct visual response or by an immediate or delayed visuomotor (reaching-to-touch) response. Patients demonstrated significantly greater magnitudes of the Roelofs effect in all response modes, indicating the existence of excessive spatial contextual effects of the frame during the processing of visual and visuomotor information, and when the two types of information are integrated over a delayed visuomotor response condition. These results provide evidence for a hypothesis of improper inhibitory control as a common mechanism underpinning abnormal visual and visuomotor processes in this mental disorder.

Copyright © 2010 IBRO. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

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