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Aberrant connectivity in auditory precision encoding in schizophrenia spectrum disorder and across the continuum of psychotic-like experiences

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  • Kit Melissa Larsen
  • Ilvana Dzafic
  • Hayley Darke
  • Holly Pertile
  • Olivia Carter
  • Suresh Sundram
  • Marta I Garrido
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BACKGROUND: The ability to generate a precise internal model of statistical regularities is impaired in schizophrenia. Predictive coding accounts of schizophrenia suggest that psychotic symptoms may be explained by a failure to build precise beliefs or a model of the world. The precision of this model may vary with context. For example, in a noisy environment the model will be more imprecise compared to a model built in an environment with lower noise. However compelling, this idea has not yet been empirically studied in schizophrenia.

METHODS: In this study, 62 participants engaged in a stochastic mismatch negativity paradigm with high and low precision. We included inpatients with a schizophrenia spectrum disorder (N = 20), inpatients with a psychiatric disorder but without psychosis (N = 20), and healthy controls (N = 22), with comparable sex ratio and age distribution. Bayesian mapping and dynamic causal modelling were employed to investigate the underlying microcircuitry of precision encoding of auditory stimuli.

RESULTS: We found strong evidence (exceedance P > 0.99) for differences in the underlying connectivity associated with precision encoding between the three groups as well as on the continuum of psychotic-like experiences assessed across all participants. Critically, we show changes in interhemispheric connectivity between the two inpatient groups, with some connections further aligning on the continuum of psychotic-like experiences.

CONCLUSIONS: While our results suggest continuity in backward connectivity alterations with psychotic-like experiences regardless of diagnosis, they also point to specificity for the schizophrenia spectrum disorder group in interhemispheric connectivity alterations.

Original languageEnglish
JournalSchizophrenia Research
Volume222
Pages (from-to)185-194
Number of pages10
ISSN0920-9964
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2020

    Research areas

  • Dynamic causal modelling, EEG, MMN, Posterior probability maps, Psychosis, Schizophrenia, Schizotypy

ID: 60230239