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Neuroscientist. 2012 Apr;18(2):180-200. doi: 10.1177/1073858410395147. Epub 2011 Apr 29.

Hippocampal volume reduction in first-episode and chronic schizophrenia: a review and meta-analysis.

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1
Laboratory of Clinical and Behavioural Neurology, IRCCS Santa Lucia Foundation, Rome, Italy.

Abstract

Several magnetic resonance imaging studies have reported hippocampal volume reduction in patients with schizophrenia, but other studies have reported contrasting results. In this review and meta-analysis, the authors aim to clarify whether a reduction in hippocampal volume characterizes patients with schizophrenia by considering illness phase (chronic and first episode) and hippocampus side separately. They made a detailed literature search for studies reporting physical volumetric hippocampal measures of patients with schizophrenia and healthy control (HC) participants and found 44 studies that were eligible for meta-analysis. Individual meta-analyses were also performed on 13 studies of first-episode patients and on 22 studies of chronic patients. The authors also detected any different findings when only males or both males and females were considered. Finally, additional meta-analyses and analyses of variance investigated the role of the factors "illness phase" and "side" on hippocampal volume reduction. Overall, the patient group showed significant bilateral hippocampal volume reduction compared with HC. Interestingly, first-episode and chronic patients showed same-size hippocampal volume reduction. Moreover, the left hippocampus was smaller than the right hippocampus in patients and HC. This review and meta-analysis raises the question about whether hippocampal volume reduction in schizophrenia is of neurodevelopmental origin. Future studies should specifically investigate this issue.

PMID:
21531988
DOI:
10.1177/1073858410395147
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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