Different patterns of gray matter volume (GMV) abnormalities have been reported between chronic patients with deficit schizophrenia (DS), relative to nondeficit schizophrenia (NDS) patients. However, it is not clear whether these differences are characteristic to the pathophysiology of DS or due to the effects of medications or illness durations. To address this issue, GMV in 88 first-episode, drug-naive patients with schizophrenia (44 DS and 44 NDS), 67 of their first-degree relatives and 84 healthy controls were assessed using voxel- based morphometry (VBM) and compared between groups. Correlations between GMV and clinical symptoms in patients were also assessed. Compared to controls, DS patients displayed more severe GMV reduction in the cerebellar culmen than NDS patients. GMV reduction in culmen was also observed in the first-degree relatives of DS (but not NDS) patients, suggesting possible different genetic risk in DS and NDS. The left insula was significantly smaller in DS patients than both NDS patients and controls, and smaller GMV of this region was associated with more severe negative symptoms in patients. Our results collectively indicate that DS might represent a distinct subtype of schizophrenia from NDS and the GMV change in left insula may be a morphological signature of DS.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Neuroscience (miscellaneous)
- Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
- Psychiatry and Mental health