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Am J Psychiatry. 1995 Mar;152(3):447-9.

Quantitative magnetic resonance imaging of the brain in late-life schizophrenia.

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  • 1Department of Psychiatry, University of California, San Diego.



This study compared morphometric analyses of brain regions in elderly subjects with early- or late-onset schizophrenia to identify structural abnormalities responsible for schizophrenia.


Quantitative analyses of magnetic resonance images of the brain were performed in 16 patients with DSM-III-R-diagnosed late-onset schizophrenia (i.e., onset after age 45), 14 patients with early-onset schizophrenia, and 28 normal comparison subjects, all of whom were over the age of 45. The three groups were similar in age, sex, education, and handedness.


The groups differed significantly in ventricular and thalamic volumes. The patients with late-onset schizophrenia had significantly larger ventricles than the normal comparison subjects and significantly larger thalamic volumes than the patients with early-onset schizophrenia. There were no significant linear correlations between thalamic volume and age at onset, duration of illness, or mean current neuroleptic dose.


Differences in thalamic volume may account for the putative disruption in thalamofrontal ciruitry in schizophrenia.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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