Parieto-prefrontal dysfunction during visuo-auditory information processing in elderly, chronic schizophrenic patients and medication effects

2009 | journal article. A publication with affiliation to the University of Göttingen.

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​Parieto-prefrontal dysfunction during visuo-auditory information processing in elderly, chronic schizophrenic patients and medication effects​
Schmitt, A.; Otto, S.; Jatzko, A.; Ruf, M.; Demirakca, T.; Tost, H. & Gruber, O. et al.​ (2009) 
Revista de psiquiatria clínica36(3) pp. 89​-96​.​ DOI: 

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Schmitt, Andrea; Otto, Sylvia; Jatzko, Alexander; Ruf, Matthias; Demirakca, Traute; Tost, Heike; Gruber, Oliver; Parlapani, Eleni; Falkai, Peter; Braus, Dieter F.
Objectives: In first-episode schizophrenia patients, functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) has shown prefronto-parietal dysfunction during acoustic and visual stimulation. The aim of this study was to investigate the prefronto-parietal network in elderly schizophrenia patients using the same paradigm. Additionally, we hypothesized favourable effects on brain activation by the atypical antipsychotic clozapine compared to typical neuroleptics. Methods: We investigated 18 elderly, chronic schizophrenia patients and 21 elderly healthy controls. Nine schizophrenia patients had been medicated with clozapine and 9 had been receiving typical neuroleptics over decades. In addition to assessments with psychopathological and neuropsychological rating scales we used an acoustic and visual stimulation paradigm in a 1.5 Tesla MRI scanner to investigate BOLD-response in different brain areas. Results: Compared to healthy controls schizophrenia patients showed decreased brain activation in the prefrontal and parietal cortex as well as medial anterior cingulate gyrus compared to healthy controls. In these regions, patients medicated with clozapine showed increased BOLD-response compared to patients treated with typical neuroleptics. Discussion: Our study confirmed prefronto-parietal network disturbances in elderly schizophrenia patients thus pointing to the preservation of brain activation deficits and the influence of neurodevelopmental disturbances in chronic schizophrenia until old-age. Conclusion: The atypical antipsychotic clozapine seems to facilitate brain activation even in elderly, chronic schizophrenia patients.
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Univ Sao Paulo, Inst Psiquiatria
Revista de psiquiatria clínica 
Universitätsmedizin Göttingen



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