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Schizophr Res. 2000 Aug 3;44(2):129-36.

Childhood schizotypy and positive symptoms in schizophrenic patients predict schizotypy in relatives.

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Department of Psychological Medicine, Institute of Psychiatry, De Crespigny Park, Denmark Hill, SE5 8AF, London, UK.



Schizotypy is one phenotypic expression of the familial-genetic liability to schizophrenia, but its precise relationship to frank psychotic symptoms remains unclear. We, therefore, set out to examine the relationships between (a) premorbid personality in schizophrenic patients, (b) the psychopathology they showed, and (c) schizotypal traits in their relatives.


Ninety consecutively admitted schizophrenic patients were interviewed with the Present State Examination (PSE). Their mothers were interviewed concerning their childhood personality and social adjustment, and 121 of their well relatives were evaluated with three different schizotypal scales. Factor analyses were carried out on (a) the nine main psychotic symptoms from the patients' PSE interview, and on (b) the schizotypal features derived from the scales completed by the first-degree relatives. Correlation coefficients were calculated between premorbid personality traits, and factor scores in probands and in relatives.


No relationship was found between childhood schizoid-schizotypal personality traits and any particular dimension of psychopathology in patients. The positive syndrome in patients was correlated with higher scores for relatives on the three schizotypy scales, but did not predict any specific pattern of schizotypy in the relatives. Premorbid schizoid-schizotypal traits were also correlated with schizotypy in the relatives.


Schizotypy in relatives has a familial relationship with schizoid-schizotypal traits in the childhood, and with positive symptoms during the illness, of schizophrenic patients.

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