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Neuropsychiatr Dis Treat. 2019 Sep 10;15:2621-2627. doi: 10.2147/NDT.S223278. eCollection 2019.

C-reactive protein is associated with severity of thought and language dysfunction in patients with schizophrenia.

Chang CH1,2,3, Lane HY#1,2,4,5, Liu CY6, Cheng PC6, Chen SJ7,8, Lin CH#1,4,9.

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Institute of Clinical Medical Science, China Medical University, Taichung, Taiwan.
Department of Psychiatry & Brain Disease Research Center, China Medical University Hospital, Taichung, Taiwan.
An Nan Hospital, China Medical University, Tainan, Taiwan.
Graduate Institute of Biomedical Sciences, China Medical University, Taichung, Taiwan.
Department of Psychology, College of Medical and Health Sciences, Asia University, Taichung, Taiwan.
Biostatistical Consulting Laboratory, Department of Speech Language Pathology and Audiology, National Taipei University of Nursing and Health Sciences, Taipei, Taiwan.
Department of Psychiatry, Mackay Memorial Hospital Taitung Branch, Taitung, Taiwan.
Department of Medicine, Mackay Medical College, New Taipei, Taiwan.
Kaohsiung Chang Gung Memorial Hospital, Chang Gung University College of Medicine, Kaohsiung, Taiwan.
Contributed equally



Numerous studies have demonstrated an association between C-reactive protein (CRP) levels and schizophrenia. However, the findings on psychotic severity and cognition remain inconsistent. The relationship between CRP and formal thought disorder in subdomains remains unclear.


We enrolled stable patients (defined as those who had no treatment changes during the 4-week period before evaluation) with a diagnosis of schizophrenia or schizoaffective disorder, according to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition. We used the 30-item Thought and Language Disorder (TALD) scale to evaluate thought and language dysfunction over four subscales. We assessed psychotic symptoms using the Positive and Negative Syndrome Scale (PANSS). We collected fasting venous blood and measured plasma CRP levels.


We enrolled 60 patients with schizophrenia. All patients received TALD and PANSS evaluation, and 33 of them had their CRP levels checked. The multivariate regression analysis indicated that CRP levels were significantly associated with the total score on the TALD (t=2.757, P=0.010) and the TALD Objective Positive subscale (t=2.749, P=0.011), after sex, age, duration of illness (in years), and use of atypical antipsychotics were adjusted for. Additionally, CRP was significantly associated with the PANSS positive subscale (t=2.102, P=0.045). A significantly positive correlation was observed between the total scores on the TALD scale and PANSS (ρ =0.751, P<0.001).


Our results suggest that abnormal CRP levels are significantly associated with formal thought and language dysfunction in the Objective Positive subdomain and positive psychotic symptoms.


C-reactive protein; formal thought disorder; schizophrenia

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