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Psychiatry Res. 2009 Oct 30;174(1):17-23. doi: 10.1016/j.pscychresns.2009.03.010. Epub 2009 Sep 23.

Retrosplenial cortex connectivity in schizophrenia.

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Department of Philosophy and Religious Studies, Old Dominion University, BAL9013, Norfolk, VA 23529, USA.


In this paper, we build on our previous analysis [Bluhm, R.L., Miller, J., Lanius, R.A., Osuch, E.A., Boksman, K., Neufeld, R.W.J., et al., 2007 Spontaneous low-frequency fluctuations in the BOLD signal in schizophrenic patients: anomalies in the default network. Schizophrenia Bulletin 33, 1004-1012] of resting state connectivity in schizophrenia by examining alterations in connectivity of the retrosplenial cortex. We have previously demonstrated altered connectivity of the posterior cingulate/precuneus, particularly with other regions of the "default network" (which includes the medial prefrontal cortex and bilateral lateral parietal cortex). It was hypothesized that the retrosplenial cortex would show aberrant patterns of connectivity with regions of the default network and regions associated with memory. Patients with schizophrenia (N=17) and healthy controls (N=17) underwent a 5.5-min resting functional magnetic resonance imaging scan. Lower correlations were observed in patients with schizophrenia than in healthy controls between the retrosplenial cortex and both the temporal lobe and regions of the default network. In patients with schizophrenia, activity in the retrosplenial cortex correlated negatively with activity in bilateral anterior cingulate gyrus/medial prefrontal cortex (BA 32/10), despite the fact that these regions, as part of the default network, were expected to show positive correlations in activity. Connectivity of the retrosplenial cortex was greater in patients with more positive symptoms with areas previously associated with hallucinations, particularly the left superior temporal gyrus. These results suggest that spontaneous activity in the retrosplenial cortex during rest is altered in patients with schizophrenia. These alterations may help to explain alterations in self-oriented processing in this patient population.

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