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PLoS One. 2015 Jul 31;10(7):e0130435. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0130435. eCollection 2015.

Impaired Verbal Learning Is Associated with Larger Caudate Volumes in Early Onset Schizophrenia Spectrum Disorders.

Author information

1
Research Unit Child and Adolescent Mental Health, Oslo University Hospital, Oslo Norway; Department of Psychology, University of Oslo, Oslo, Norway.
2
NORMENT and K.G. Jebsen Centre for Psychosis Research, Institute of Clinical Medicine, University of Oslo, Oslo, Norway; Department of Psychiatric Research, Diakonhjemmet Hospital, Oslo, Norway.
3
Department of Psychology, University of Oslo, Oslo, Norway; Mental Health Services, Akershus University Hospital, Lørenskog, Norway.
4
Vestre Viken Hospital Trust, Drammen, Norway.
5
Department of Psychology, University of Oslo, Oslo, Norway.
6
Department of Laboratory Medicine, Children's and Women's Health, Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Trondheim, Norway.
7
The Intervention Centre, Oslo University Hospital, Oslo, Norway.
8
Department of Psychology, University of Oslo, Oslo, Norway; Vestre Viken Hospital Trust, Drammen, Norway.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Both brain structural abnormalities and neurocognitive impairments are core features of schizophrenia. We have previously reported enlargements in subcortical brain structure volumes and impairment of neurocognitive functioning as measured by the MATRICS Cognitive Consensus Battery (MCCB) in early onset schizophrenia spectrum disorders (EOS). To our knowledge, no previous study has investigated whether neurocognitive performance and volumetric abnormalities in subcortical brain structures are related in EOS.

METHODS:

Twenty-four patients with EOS and 33 healthy controls (HC) were included in the study. Relationships between the caudate nucleus, the lateral and fourth ventricles volumes and neurocognitive performance were investigated with multivariate linear regression analyses. Intracranial volume, age, antipsychotic medication and IQ were included as independent predictor-variables.

RESULTS:

The caudate volume was negatively correlated with verbal learning performance uniquely in the EOS group (r=-.454, p=.034). There were comparable positive correlations between the lateral ventricular volume and the processing speed, attention and reasoning and problem solving domains for both the EOS patients and the healthy controls. Antipsychotic medication was related to ventricular enlargements, but did not affect the brain structure-function relationship.

CONCLUSION:

Enlargement of the caudate volume was related to poorer verbal learning performance in patients with EOS. Despite a 32% enlargement of the lateral ventricles in the EOS group, associations to processing speed, attention and reasoning and problem solving were similar for both the EOS and the HC groups.

PMID:
26230626
PMCID:
PMC4521864
DOI:
10.1371/journal.pone.0130435
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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