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The aging process is associated with a deterioration of the physiological systems, especially the homeostatic (nervous, immune and endocrine) systems with the consequent increase in morbidity and mortality. With the aging population, increasing number of studies focus on lifestyle interventions to slow down these aging derangements. Here, animal models can be useful to assess their long-term effects and potential value taking into advantage their shorter life span. In a previous work, old animals beneficed of 2 months of continuous cohabitation with adult, with improvements on behaviour, immune function and redox state as well as a higher longevity. However, their adult counterparts showed impairments in these parameters. In the present study, this social strategy was modified with the aim to improve the homeostatic systems in both the old and the adult animals.) Animals of the experimental group with “two old ICR-CD1 female mice cohabiting 15 minutes each day for 2 months with five adult mic” were studied and compared to adult and old controls. After this time, mice were submitted to a behavioural battery of tests to analyse their sensorimotor abilities, anxiety-like behaviours, and exploratory capacities. Peritoneal leukocytes were collected and several immune functions, oxidative and inflammatory stress parameters as well as catecholamine concentrations were assessed. When the adult mice reached old age the same parameters were again analysed. The life span of each animal was also recorded. Several mice of each group were sacrificed to obtain plasma and the hormone oxytocin was evaluated. The results show that old mice presented an improvement of behavioural capacities, immune functions and lower oxidative and inflammatory stress after the two months of social interaction with adult animals, and consequently they exhibited an extended life span. Adult mice, in general, did not show any changes after social interaction, but when they achieved old age an improvement of all the parameters studied and of longevity was observed in comparison with those mice that never had a social interaction with old animals. In conclusion, a short social interaction between old and adult individuals can be an excellent strategy for improving in both the health state and longevity.
Darwin's frogs Rhinoderma darwinii and Rhinoderma rufum are the only known species of amphibians in which males brood their offspring in their vocal sacs. We propose these frogs as flagship species for the conservation of the Austral temperate forests of Chile and Argentina. This recommendation forms part of the vision of the Binational Conservation Strategy for Darwin's Frogs, which was launched in 2018. The strategy is a conservation initiative led by the IUCN SSC Amphibian Specialist Group, which in 2017 convened 30 governmental, non-profit and private organizations from Chile, Argentina and elsewhere. Darwin's frogs are iconic examples of the global amphibian conservation crisis: R. rufum is categorized as Critically Endangered (Possibly Extinct) on the IUCN Red List, and R. darwinii as Endangered. Here we articulate the conservation planning process that led to the development of the conservation strategy for these species and present its main findings and recommendations. Using an evidence-based approach, the Binational Conservation Strategy for Darwin's Frogs contains a comprehensive status review of Rhinoderma spp., including critical threat analyses, and proposes 39 prioritized conservation actions. Its goal is that by 2028, key information gaps on Rhinoderma spp. will be filled, the main threats to these species will be reduced, and financial, legal and societal support will have been achieved. The strategy is a multi-disciplinary, transnational endeavour aimed at ensuring the long-term viability of these unique frogs and their particular habitat.
OBJECTIVES/GOALS: The goal of this project was to assess the scientific impact of Miami CTSI’s Mentored Career Development (KL2) Program using bibliometric tools and network visualization in addition to the traditional metrics used to provide a comprehensive evaluation. METHODS/STUDY POPULATION: Scholarly productivity of KL2 scholars were tracked using REDCap. For bibliometric data analysis and visualization, publications were queried using iCite (NIH Office of Portfolio Analysis) and Web of Science database. A total of 173 publications produced by eight KL2 scholars from 2013-2018 were analyzed and categorized into pre-award, during award, and post-award periods. iCite was used to assess scientific influence and translation. Scientific networks and collaboration were visualized using VOSviewer (Centre for Science and Technology Studies, Leiden University). CTSA Common Metrics were tracked using the Results Based Accountability framework. RESULTS/ANTICIPATED RESULTS: Albeit of modest size, the Miami CTSI’s KL2 Program had significant scientific productivity and impact in its first five years. Our KL2 scholars’ publications were cited twice as frequently as other papers in their fields. Further, 48% of publications post KL2 award were above the NIH 50th percentile and had higher citation impact compared to the average NIH-funded paper; 11% were in the top 10% NIH citation ranking. In contrast, only 20% of the publications pre-KL2 award were above the NIH 50th percentile. The program also promoted research collaboration; network visualizations indicate larger co-authorship and organization networks of KL2 scholars post-award. DISCUSSION/SIGNIFICANCE OF IMPACT: Bibliometric and data visualization approaches helped us better identify trends and gauge effectiveness of the KL2 program. These findings provided useful insight into the scientific influence and impact of our scholars’ work.
Schizophrenia is a chronic disease. Several etiopathogenic aetiologies have been posed, among them the existence of cerebral inflammation. S100B is a calcium-binding protein, mainly produced and secreted by astrocytes, that mediates the interaction among glial cells and between glial cells and neurons. Serum S100B levels have been proposed as a peripheral marker of brain inflammation.
The aim of this research is to study if the serum level of the protein S100B has relationship with positive psychopathology.
31 paranoid schizophrenic inpatients (22 male and 9 female, 36.7±10.3 years) meeting DSM-IV criteria participated in the study. Blood was sampled by venipuncture at 12:00 and 24:00 hours. Blood extractions were carried out during the first 48 hours after hospital admission. Psychopathology was assessed by the Positive and Negative Syndrome Scale (PANSS). Serum S100B levels were measured by sandwich ELISA techniques.
Correlations between serum levels of S100B protein and PANSS positive scores are shown in the following table. The first figure corresponds to the Pearson's correlation coefficient, while the figure in brackets corresponds to its statistical significance.
Total Positive Score
Serum levels of S100B protein may be used as a biological marker of positive psychopathology in paranoid schizophrenia.Acknowledgement
The purpose of this study is to investigate if the MDA plasma concentrations are correlated to negative psychopathology in paranoid schizophrenic inpatients.
The sample was comprised by 38 patients who were admitted in the psychiatric ward of the University Hospital of the Canaries. Thirty eight patients were male and 9 were female with medium average age of 37.41±11.23. Exclusion criteria were psychoactive substance use, presence of acute or chronic organic pathology, treatment with immunosuppressive medication, pregnancy and mental retardation or severe cognitive impairment. There were performed two blood extractions following the circadian rhythm, at 12:00 and at 24:00 hours. One hour before night blood collection, each patient was placed in a reclined position in bed, with the eyes closed, in complete darkness and with eyes covered with a mask. Blood was centrifuged at 3.000 rpm for 10 minutes. Specific biological and psychopathological determinations were performed at admission and at discharge. Psychopathology was assessed with PANSS and by the same psychiatrist. Statistical analyses were carried out with the Social Statistical Package for the Social Sciences (SPSS). MDA was determined spectrophotometrically.
MDA level at night was 1.94±1.54 while MDA level at midday was 2.23±1.36.Mean PANSS negative score was 15.73±6.31.Serum MDA level correlated positively with PANSS negative scores, both at midday and night (midday r=0.39, p< 0.01, midnight r=0.41, p< 0.01).
The total negative subscale score correlated positively with day and night time levels of MDA, therefore we can conclude that MDA may be used as a marker of negative psychopathology.
We present the case of a schizophrenic patient with severe insomnia that had a partial response to high doses of benzodiazepines and sedating antipsychotics. Treatment with agomelatine allowed to suspend benzodiazepine treatment and restore quality of sleep.
Mr. Y is a 36 year old male patient diagnosed with simple schizophrenia that has complained of insomnia since the age of sixteen. During the last three years the treatment that the patient was following was stable and consisted of 100 mg of diazepam, 300 mg of levomepromazine and 120 mg of clotiapine every night. During the last year 60 mg of duloxetine were added to treat a moderate depression. His mood improved with the prescribed treatment, but eleven months later it worsened. In an attempt to simultaneously treat the mood and the sleep disorder, during a period of 4 days, a dosis of 12.5 mg of aglomelatin at dinner was introduced while the morning dose of duloxetine was reduced to 30mg. On the fifth day, agomelatine was increased to 25 mg at dinner while duloxetine was suspended. The antipsychotic treatment was kept stable while the patient was instructed to reduce 10 mg of diazepam every week until next appointment one month later. In the next appointment the patient had completely suspended diazepam one week before the appointment. The patient referred improved sleep quality and no rebound insomnia.
Agomelatine may be a valid treatment of insomnia in schizophrenia.
The objective of this study was to examine the association of different personality traits on severity of addiction indexes and patterns of drug use level, in a sample of adolescent psychiatric patients with Substance Use Disorders (SUD), based on the dimensional model of Personality Psychopathology Five (PSY-5) of the MMPI-A.
The Teen Addiction Severity Index (T-ASI), the MMPI-A, and an inventory of drug use pattern were administered to 73 psychiatric patients (M=16.0, SD=1.18 years old; 51% male).
Rho Spearman correlations showed significant associations between Disconstraint (DISC) and T-ASI indexes of drug and social problems (rho= .342, p= .003, and rho= .320, p= .006) and also between DISC in relation to level of cannabis use and other drugs than cocaine and amphetamines (rho= .334, p= .004, and rho= .274, p= .023). The dimension of Psychoticism (PSYC) and Aggressiveness (AGGR) showed slight association with cannabis use (rho= .236, p= .045, and rho= .247, p= .035). The Negative emotionality (NEGE) and Introversion (INTR) showed a moderate association with the T-ASI index of psychiatric problems (rho= .265, p=0.023, and rho=.256, p= .029) but not with drug problems.
The DISC trait could represent a good indicator of risk for drug related problems. High scores in PSYC and AGGR are slightly associated to increase level of cannabis use. While psychiatric complaints are associated with NEGE and INTR traits.
Outpatient group psychotherapy began in our department in 2002 as a complement to the acute inpatient unit. Patients with heterogeneous diagnoses were included before or after a short-duration stay in the unit. Clinicians’ impression was that re-entries to the acute unit were less frequent and shorter after group therapy.
The objective is to determine the real impact of group psychotherapy on the number and mean duration of these re-entries.
Data was collected for 156 patients during period of two years. The number and mean duration of hospitalization in the psychiatric acute unit were registered for each patient during the year before and in the year after therapy to be analyzed and compared.
Before attending group psychotherapy 60.3% of the patients were hospitalized in the acute unit (39.1% once, 12.8% twice, 6.4% three times, 1.9% four times). 65.4% had no re-entries in the following year; 71% of those who did had one re-entry. The mean number of entries per year in the acute unit before therapy was 0.92, while the mean after therapy was 0.52. The mean stay was 7.86 days before therapy, and 4.62 days after. The mean differences between before and after entries were significant in statistical analyses.
Group psychotherapy seems to have effects on number and duration of re-entries to the acute unit for most patients in the different diagnostic categories. These findings have important implications, as this form of therapy is cost-effective and available for a wide range of psychiatric patients.
Fiction films offer unexplored opportunities of rehabilitation for schizophrenia and other psychoses. Schizophrenia produces deficits y distortions in the perception and comprehension of reality, also expressed in the perception and comprehension of films. After a year of an “ad hoc” experience, the following technique was developed:
1) Selecting a fiction film for its narrative, affective, cognitive and social cognitive content
2) Briefly presenting of the film to a group of 8-16 patients with diverse psychosis.
3) Screening of the film to the patients and the therapeutic team.
4) Summarizing of the plot by a patient. Group correcting of distortions and deficits caused by problems of attention and working memory, as well as positive, negative, affective and social cognitive symptoms (emotional perception, theory of mind, attributive style)
5) Selecting 1-2 sequences by each patient, and group commenting using the same technique.
6) Field recording of all the commentaries obtained.
7) Second screening of the film two days after, repeating points 2 to 6.
8) Comparing both field records.
An experimental study using this technique is presented. 8 patients with schizophrenia and other psychoses watched 4 fiction films (“The 39 Steps”, “Charade”, “M”, “The General”). The differences founded in both viewings by two external evaluators (using CGI and analogical scales of the main variables) are presented and commented. An evaluation of the perceived usefulness and satisfaction of the participants was included.
Stress and trauma have been reported as leading contributing factors in schizophrenia. And certainly child abuse (neglect, emotional, physical and sexual abuse among others) has a lasting negative impact, which is well established in literature.
To consider the presence of infant trauma and its relationship with psychopathology in paranoid schizophrenics.Methods. 37 patients (mean age 29±6.3; years from onset 9.20±4.7), meeting DSM IV paranoid schizophrenia criteria, undergoing treatment in a university hospital are studied. The PANSS is administered in order to rate psychopathology.
27 patients had infant trauma (55.8%). Main traumas are: sexual abuse (12.8%), child abuse (7.7%), both sexual and child abuse (5.18%), parental separation (7.7%), extra-rigid parents (2.6%), alcoholic parents (18.2%), child abuse and mother's death in childhood (2.6%). Infant trauma and psychopathology showed a significant relationship concerning Hostility (No 1.75±1.209, Yes 2.26±1.759), Unnatural Movements and Posture (No 1.55±0.945, Yes 1.16±0.545), Depression (No 1.25±0.550, Yes 1.74±1.284) and Preoccupation (No 2.75±1.410, Yes 3.26±1.996).
Infant trauma is common in paranoid schizophrenia and our findings give some evidence to a relationship with psychopathology, especially with dimensions as Hostility, Unnatural Movements and Posture, Depression and Preoccupation. Despite sample size, a high proportion (55.8%) of the patients presented infant trauma and future research is needed in order to open new avenues in this field, particularly studies concerning infant trauma and symptomatology specificity will be greatly appreciated as well as the plausible link to personality traits and personality disorders.
Anti-NMDA-receptor encephalitis is subacute disorder that has been recently described in young women and girls who often present neuropsychiatric symptoms as first clinical features; thus, it is common that they receive an initial assessment, diagnose or even treatment by a specialist in Psychiatry.
Presenting a case of Anti-NMDA-receptor encephalitis that was observed at our hospital and the steps taken from its initial assessment by Psychiatry to the final diagnose and treatment by Neurology, our objective is to describe this disorder in order to make it known to the specialists in Psychiatry.
The case is that of a 14 year old girl who presents altered behavior, bizarre delusions and auditory hallucinations with subacute onset. In psychiatric assessment it is noted that the patient presents fever, slight and language impairment: Medical and Neurological assessment are requested. The steps followed to rule out other disorders are presented. SPECT and the detection of specific anti-NMDA-receptor antibodies in serum were necessary for an accurate diagnose.
The detection of specific antibodies is necessary for the diagnose of Anti-NMDA-receptor encephalitis. NMDA receptors are ligand-gated cation channels with crucial roles in synaptic transmission and plasticity. Their alteration could be a pathogenic mechanism in disorders such as epilepsy, dementia and schizophrenia.
Anti-NMDA-receptor encephalitis is a recently described clinical entity that should be taken in consideration to rule out other causes of subacute onset psychiatric symptoms in young women and girls. Its well-defined set of clinical characteristics should become familiar to the specialists in Psychiatry.
In a previous study (Senín-Calderón et al., 2010) we observed that the REF scale of referential thinking (Lenzenweger et al., 1997) didn’t discriminate among different mental disorders.
Objectives and hypotheses
We try to verify if self-references in various disorders are related to the severity of psychopathology (patients from public hospital and a private clinical). We predict that there will be differences between patients and controls, but not between the clinical samples. Psychotic disorders will be characterized by a significantly greater presence of self-references.
Participants: 287 subjects, 47 patients from a private clinical center, 57.4% women (mean age = 35.02, SD = 12.69), 30 patients from a public hospital, 53.3% women (38.36 years, SD = 9.53), and 210 controls selected from the general population, 50.5% women (33.80 years, SD = 11.79). Cross-sectional design, correlation method. All analysis were accepted at p < .05.
There are significant differences in self-references between patients and controls in frequency (t (285) = 2.33, p = . 021) and intensity (t (83.98) = 3.59, p = . 001). No significant differences between patients groups (p>.05) (REF-intensity without homogeneity, p < .05). No significant differences in self-references between types of diagnoses except psychotic patients versus adjustment disorder (frequency and intensity).
Self-references are highlighted in psychosis but, with the exception of adjustment disorders, doesn’t discriminate between personality, mood or anxiety disorders. Differences are more related to the clinical severity (BPRS) than with referential thinking.
Interest in the premorbid personality of schizophrenic patients is well established in the psychiatric literature. The relationship between personality disorders and acute phase proteins (APP) in schizophrenia is not well known.
Investigating the relationship among acute phase proteins and personality disorders in schizophrenic patients in a sample of adult schizophrenic patients under psychiatric treatment in a general hospital health setting.
Material and Methods:
37 adult paranoid schizophrenics undergoing treatment in the University Hospital of the Canary Islands with DSM-IV diagnosis of paranoid schizophrenia are included. Years from onset 9.20 s.d. 6.29, age at onset 19.75 s.d. 4.73. The record of personality disorders as a secondary diagnosis in the medical chart was taking into account. A blood sample as routine standard analysis was carried out in each patient.
In 21 patients (56.7%) a personality disorder, mainly with paranoid and schizotypal traits, was registered. The percentage of each personality disorder is as follows, Schizotypal (16.2%), Paranoid (13.5%), Schizoid (2.7%), Paranoid and Schizotypal (24.3%). The results point to no significant correlation according to APP (C3, C4, alpha2-macroglobulin, alpha1-glicoprotein, ceruloplasmin) in the different diagnostic groups.
Discussion and conclusions:
In our study there is no evidence to support a significant correlation among APP and the different personality disorders in our sample of schizophrenics in spite of a positive correlation of APP and some psychopathology dimensions that has been communicated earlier elsewhere. In order to set some possible specificity of acute phase proteins and other clinical features in schizophrenia further research is required.
Alterations in fear learning processes may be implicated in mood disorders. Fear learning has been investigated with Pavlovian classical fear conditioning paradigms, consisting of pairing a neutral conditioned stimulus (CS), such as a tone, with an aversive unconditioned stimulus (US), such as a footshock. Upon subsequent exposure, the CS is perceived as aversive and provokes a fear response.The novel antidepressant agomelatine acts as a melatonergic receptor agonist and a 5-HT2C receptor antagonist. Its antidepressant action was demonstrated in preclinical and clinical studies. Agomelatine has also anxiolytic properties. The aim of this study was to determine how acute agomelatine treatment might differentially alter fear circuits by using auditory fear conditioning in the rat.A single pre-training injection of agomelatine (40 mg/kg intraperitoneally) significantly reduced freezing to the fear arousing CS 24 hours after training but not during training or 3 hours after training. This pattern of results is consistent with an effect on the consolidation of the fear memory. A single pre-testing injection of agomelatine had no effect on conditioned fear expression.
These effects of agomelatine should be considered in relation to its antidepressant action. Agomelatine achieved a reduction of fear conditioning in a single dose, while classical SSRIs only reduced fear conditioning after chronic treatment. This finding is consistent with clinical studies suggesting a faster onset of action of agomelatine than classical SSRI treatment.
Schizophrenia is not only a mental disorder but also has other components affecting the physical part of the body. Several studies have suggested that neuroinflammatory processes may play a role in schizophrenia pathogenesis, at least in a subgroup of patients.
This poster reported the preliminary results of a project aiming to find schizophrenia biomarkers. We present biological parameters and clinical variables of patients with schizophrenia according to the lab results and the clinical assessments.
Cross-sectional, naturalistic study. Inclusion criteria: DSM-IV diagnosis of schizophrenia; age >17 years; and written informed consent given.
123 patients with schizophrenia. Mean age 40.75 (10.37), 67.5% males. There is relationship between homocysteine(oxidative stress) and psychopathology: PANSS [negative subscale 0.27 (p=0.003), general subscale 0.21 (p=0.028) and Marder factor 0.28 (p=0.003)], NSA [global score 0.24 (p=0.010), and some factors: communication 0.26 (p=0.005), affect 0.28 (p=0.002), motivation 0.30 (p=0.001) and motor retardation 0.27 (p=0.004)]; Functioning [(PSP total score -0.24 (p=0.011) and some PSP factors: work 0.30 (p=0.001), self-care 0.21 (p=0.022)]. However, there is no relationship between C-reactive protein(inflammation) and any clinical variable. On the other hand, there is relationship between: glucose and cognitive impairment; cholesterol and NSA motivation score, cognitive impairment and PSP (total score, self-care and work); triglycerides and HDRS (total score, melancholia factor and vitality factor), NSA motivation score and cognitive impairment.
The negative dimension of schizophrenia is associated with high homocysteine levels, which means an oxidative stress state. As well, a worse functioning level is associated with high homocysteine level.
Some coping strategies might serve as protective functions by regulating the negative emotions associated with stress, whereas others may exacerbate the effects of stress and contribute to maladaptation.
To examine the distribution of the Beck Depression Inventory II (BDI-II) scores in the Spanish sample of adolescents from the “Working in Europe to Stop Truancy among Youth” Project (WE-STAY) and study the differences according to the coping style.
Sample: 1409 pupils from 23 schools sited in Asturias (Spain) [48.55% males; mean age(SD) = 15.16(1.22)]. Instruments:
(1) Coping Across Situations Questionnaire (CASQ);
7.3% of the sample scored in mild depression, while 4.9% did so in moderate (BDI-II criteria). Significant differences were found by gender in BDI-II scores, females scoring higher in severe, moderate and mild depression (p< .005). Regarding to the coping style, 65.4% of the sample showed internal style. The least representative was the withdrawal style (13.9%). Significant differences were found in the coping style by gender, females scoring higher in both active and withdrawal styles (p< .050). Regarding to the relation between BDI-II scores and coping style, pupils with withdrawal style score higher in severe, moderate and mild depression (p< .000).
Although ideally would be an active style, pupils showed mainly an internal coping style (which includes assessing a situation and looking for a compromise). Coping style was related with the severity of depression. Withdrawal style (which includes denial) is related to a worsening of depression. Thereby, training coping skills may be important.
People with schizophrenia and bipolar disorder are more likely to smoke, smoke more cigarettes per day and have greater mortality from smoking-related disease than those in the general population.
To describe the sample and to identify the relationship between the pattern of tobacco use and psychopathology.
Multicenter, observational, prospective, 12-month follow up study to assess the clinical efficacy of a multicomponent smoking cessation program specifically designed for patients with severe mental illness.
65 patients from 3 Mental Health Centers sited in Spain [64.6% males; mean age (SD) = 44.63 (8.93)].
(1) Pattern of tobacco use: Fargerstrom Test for Nicotine physical Dependence; Glover-Nilsson Test for Nicotine psychological Dependence; expired carbon monoxide (CO); n° cigarettes/day; n° smoking years.
Schizophrenia 64.6% and bipolar 26.2%; suicide attempts 36.9% (2.83 mean of suicide attemps); economically active 7.7%. There is no differences: in psychopatology severity between “heavy smokers” (ppm ≥ 26 or n° cigarettes/day ≥ 30) and “non heavy smokers” (ppm < 26 or n° cigarettes/day < 30) and in the pattern of tobacco use between schizophrenia and bipolar patients. There is no relationship between psychopatology severity and the pattern of tobacco use in schizophrenia patients. Finally, there is relationship between depressive symptoms (Hamilton) and nicotine psychological dependence (Glover-Nilsson Test) in bipolar disorder patients (r = 0.72, p = 0.004).
In bipolar disorder patients, there is relationship between the severity of depressive symptoms and the dependence of nicotine.
The self-medication hypothesis suggests that patients diagnosed with schizophrenia might smoke as an attempt to self-medicate theirsymptoms. As a consequence, smoking cessation could worsen their clinical status.
To assess the clinical changes associated with tobacco cessation in a sample of smoking outpatients with schizophrenia.
Sample: 63 smoking outpatients with DSM-IV Schizophrenia from three Mental Health Centers located in Northern Spain [77.0% males; mean age (SD) = 43.90 (8.72); average daily cigarette use (SD) = 27.99 (12.55)]. Instruments: (1) Clinical symptoms: Positive and Negative Symptoms Scale (PANSS), Hamilton Depression Rating Scale (HDRS), Clinical Global Impression (CGI). (2) Pattern of tobacco use: n° cigarettes/day; Expired carbon monoxide (CO ppm). Design: A quasi-experimental design with two groups was implemented: control group (GC − 18 patients not willing to stop smoking), and treatment group [TG − 45 patients in smoking cessation supported by nicotine patches or vareniclina (12 weeks)]. Patients were evaluated at baseline and at week 11 (end of program). Paired sample t-test was used to detect changes in clinical symptoms from baseline to follow-up.
23.1% stopped smoking (from TG). No significant differences were found between baseline and follow-up scores (p>.05) among smokers and abstinent in PANSS subscales, HDRS and CGI.
Tobacco cessation did not have a significant effect on the clinical symptoms of this group of patients. Further studies should analyze the stability of these outcomes at longer follow-ups to confirm our results.
Previous studies have reported progressive brain changes and cognitive deficits in early-onset psychosis (EOP). Little is known on the relationship between longitudinal changes in brain structure and neurocognition.
Naturalistic 5-year prospective study comparing frontal gray matter (GM) volume and executive functions in adolescents with a first episode of EOP and a sample of healthy controls at baseline, 2-year and 5-year follow-up.
Thirty-six patients (age at baseline 15.8 ±.7, 66.6% male) and 34 controls (15.4±1.4, 55.9% male) comprised the study sample. Both patients and controls presented with frontal GM loss during the first five years of follow-up. During the first two years, patients presented with significantly greater GM loss than controls in the left (F=9.642, p=0.003) and right frontal lobe (F=7.585, p=0.008), with no significant differences between year 2 and 5. Patients with EOP performed significantly worse in executive tasks than controls in all visits. During the first two years of follow-up, controls, but not patients, presented with a significant improvement in executive functioning (F=7.523, p=0.009), with similar evolution of cognitive functioning between years 2 and 5 in both groups (F=0.908, p=0.346). Changes in frontal GM volume and executive functioning were not significantly correlated within the entire follow-up period.
Over the first two years of illness, patients with EOP show greater frontal GM loss and less improvement in executive functions than expected. This could be a critical period for the development of deficits in EOP, in which more intensive interventions would be warranted.
Recently, a renaissance of interest in ‘negative symptoms’ as emotional withdrawal or blunted affect, has occurred. Some investigators believe that these symptoms are important indicators of outcome, of response to treatment and of a distinct underlying pathologic process.
Research on the negative-symptom syndrome in schizophrenia has been handicapped until recently.
This research aims at studying whether acute phase proteins, precisely, Alpha1-glycoprotein, can be considered as a marker of negativesymptom in Schizophrenia.
29 chronic schizophrenics were assessed by the Positive and Negative Syndrome Scale (PANSS). A routine blood test including Alpha1-glycoprotein levels was carried out.
Alpha1-glycoprotein shows a positive correlation, according to Pearson correlation coefficient, with the Negative Scale at an almost significant level (p=.05), and at a significant level in the following items, Blunted affect (p=.03), Passive/apathetic Social Withdrawal (p=.01) of the Negative spectrum and Poor Attention (p=.02) of the General Psychopathology Scale.
There is a significant correlation with two Negative variables and an almost significant one, spite of the small sample, with the Negative Scale. Further studies with bigger samples are needed in order to consider alpha1-glycoprotein as a schizophrenia negative psychopathology marker.