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The Relationship Between Depression And Positive Signs In Chronic Schizophrenia
Bahaoddini S S,Sadeghi M
Tehran University Medical Journal , 2004,
Abstract: Background: The results of studies about relationship between depression and positive signs in schizophrenia are controversial and clarifying the nature of this association may be difficult. The aim of present study is to investigate relationship between depressive symptoms and positive signs, in acute phase of patients with chronic schizophrenia, who have been admitted in Roozbeh Hospital. Materials and Methods: Assessments were performed using the Beck depression Inventory for depression (subjectively) and positive and negative syndrome scale (PANSS) for psychotic symptoms. Results: The results demonstrated a significant correlation between depressive symptoms and positive signs in these patients. Also, a significant correlation existed between depression and these items: delusions, hallucinatory behavior, excitement, hostility. Conclusion: depressive symptoms and positive signs in schizophrenia may have a common underlying pathophysiological origin.
Genetic Rat Models of Schizophrenia-Relevant Symptoms  [PDF]
Cristóbal del Río, Ignasi Oliveras, Toni Ca?ete, Gloria Blázquez, Adolf Tobe?a, Alberto Fernández-Teruel
World Journal of Neuroscience (WJNS) , 2014, DOI: 10.4236/wjns.2014.43030

It is recognized that developing valid animal models is essential for the research on the neurobiological mechanisms of (and treatments for) psychiatric disorders, even when these are as complex as schizophrenia. To be considered a valid analogue of the disorder, a given model should present good face validity (i.e. similarity of symptoms), good predictive validity (i.e. similarity of treatment effects and potential for discovering novel treatments) and enough construct validity (i.e. the model should help discover neurobiological mechanisms underlying the disorder or some relevant symptoms). The complexity of symptoms (positive, negative and cognitive) of schizophrenia makes it a very difficult task for a model to mimic all the main features of the disorder, but some rodent (mouse and rat) models have behavioural and even neurobiological phenotype characteristics resembling positive-like symptoms, cognitive symptoms and some neurochemical features of schizophrenia. As several recent works have already reviewed the main behavioural and developmental models, as well as the most used drug-induced, lesion-induced and genetic mouse models, the present review focuses on describing the most relevant genetically-based rat models of schizophrenia-relevant symptoms. Thus, we discuss several selective breeding programs leading to rat lines/strains which present impaired prepulse inhibition (PPI) of the acoustic startle response and (in some cases) latent inhibition deficits (both of which may be considered as endophenotypes of schizophrenia related with pre-attentive processes and attention, respectively), as well as other schizophrenia-relevant symptoms (e.g. learning deficits). Evidence is presented for the effects of genetic background on PPI (and other symptoms/phenotypes), as well as for environmental influences on genetic predisposition to enhanced apomorphine (mixed dopamine receptor agonist) effects. Some of the described rat models appear to present face validity and, to a certain extent, construct validity. While efforts should be made to evaluate the predictive validity of these

The occurrence and nature of early signs of schizophrenia and psychotic mood disorders among former child and adolescent psychiatric patients followed into adulthood  [cached]
Engqvist Ulf,Rydelius Per-Anders
Child and Adolescent Psychiatry and Mental Health , 2008, DOI: 10.1186/1753-2000-2-30
Abstract: Background This investigation was designed to characterize psychotic disorders among patients originally treated as in- and outpatients by child and adolescent psychiatric services and subsequently followed-up into mid-adulthood. The age at the first onset on symptoms, possible changes in diagnoses, early signs noted prior to or upon admission to child and adolescent psychiatric care and possible differences between patients with early- and later-onset disorder were of particular interest. Methods The study population consisted of patients (285 in- and 1115 outpatients) born between 1957 and 1976 and admitted to and treated by child and adolescent psychiatric care units in J mtland County, Sweden, between 1975 and 1990. The status of their mental health was monitored until 2003 using official registries and hospital records. Diagnoses based on the ICD-8 and -9 systems, which were used in Sweden from 1968–1997, converted to diagnoses according to ICD-10, which has been in use since 1997. The Comprehensive Assessment of at Risk Mental States was employed to assess the information concerning psychopathology provided by the hospital records. Results By the end of the follow-up period 62 former child and adolescent psychiatric patients (36 females and 26 males), 4.4% of the entire study group, had received an ICD-10 diagnosis of "F20–29: Schizophrenia, schizotypal and delusional disorders" (48) and/or "F30–39: Psychotic mood disorders" (14). One-third (21) of these individuals were given their initial diagnosis of psychosis in connection with child and adolescent psychiatric care. Two of these 21 were not treated later for this disorder in general (adult) psychiatric care whereas the remaining 19 individuals were diagnosed for the same type of disorder as adults. The other 41 patients were diagnosed as psychotic only in connection with general (adult) psychiatric care. The mean age at the time of first onset of symptoms was 21.4 years (SD 6.4) and corresponding median age was 18. Behavioural changes and positive symptoms were the most frequent signs associated with a diagnosis of "F20–F29: Schizophrenia, schizotypal and delusional disorders" made during child and adolescent psychiatric care. In cases where a specific psychopathology developed later on the initial admission to child and adolescent psychiatry involved unspecified psychopathology. Conclusion In summary, it appears that psychotic disorders are relatively uncommon among patients admitted to child and adolescent psychiatric care in Sweden. However, individuals experiencing early onset of
High Order Linguistic Features Such as Ambiguity Processing as Relevant Diagnostic Markers for Schizophrenia  [PDF]
Daniel Ketteler,Anastasia Theodoridou,Simon Ketteler,Matthias J?ger
Schizophrenia Research and Treatment , 2012, DOI: 10.1155/2012/825050
Abstract: Due to the deficits of schizophrenic patients regarding the understanding of vague meanings (D. Ketteler and S. Ketteler (2010)) we develop a special test battery called HOLF (high order linguistic function test), which should be able to detect subtle linguistic performance deficits in schizophrenic patients. HOLF was presented to 40 schizophrenic patients and controls, focussing on linguistic features such as ambiguity, synonymy, hypero-/hyponymy, antinomy, and adages. Using the HOLF test battery we found that schizophrenic patients showed significant difficulties in discriminating ambiguities, hypero- and hyponymy, or synonymy compared to healthy controls. Antonyms and adages showed less significant results in comparing both groups. The more difficult a linguistic task was, the more confusion was measured in the schizophrenic group while healthy controls did not show significant problems in processing high order language tasks. 1. Introduction Regarding the history of diagnostic classification of schizophrenia, diagnostic tools and catalogues focussed on different symptoms to describe a complex syndrome called schizophrenia. On the one hand, Bleuler [1] had concentrated on the phenomenon of loosening of association to classify and explain schizophrenian symptoms. According to Bleuler, language-based “loosening of association” is pathognomonic for the so-called “schizophrenic symptoms complex.” On the other hand, Schneider [2] drew attention to the significance of “core” or “first rank” symptoms first outlined by Kraepelin (specific types of hallucination and thought disorder [3]). To overcome the at least obscure relationship between thought and association disorder of Bleuler’s approach, Andreasen [4, 5] shifted the focus of investigation from “thought” to the more objectively measurable “language behaviour.” Language impairment indeed seems to be one of the “core” phenomenological characteristics of patients with schizophrenia [6, 7]. It seems to be clear that there are deficits in the neural organisation of language in schizophrenic patients [6, 8]. There is only a small number of studies focussing on high order linguistic features and particularly on the phenomenon of ambiguity. Salisbury et al. [9] described a model of initial hyperpriming and subsequent decay of information by using ERP data investigating patients with schizophrenia. Using event related brain potentials and an ambiguity processing paradigm, Salisbury [10] found that schizophrenia patients showed the largest N400 effect to subordinate associates, with less activity to dominant
Neurological Soft Signs In Psychoses A Comparison Between Schizophrenia & Other Psychotic Disorders
Shahsavand. E. Noroozian. M,Faiiazi M
Tehran University Medical Journal , 2002,
Abstract: Schizophrenia is one of the most important and disabling mental disorders in the world. Males and females are equally affected. Diagnosis is a very difficult problem in this disorder. Because the diagnostic systems such as ICD-10 and DSM-IV are mainly subjective, they are not valid and reliable. Essentially, in the future, we will need to more objective criteria in psychiatry especially in diagnosis of schizophrenia. Neurological soft signs are an example of these objective criteria. In this study we evaluated the prevalence of neurological soft signs in schizophrenic patients and compared it with the prevalence of these signs in other psychotic patients (except mood disorders with psychotic features) and normal subjects."nMethods: We compared the neurological soft signs (sensory motor integration, motor. Coordination, consequent complex motor acts, primary reflexes, and eye movements) in 30 schizophrenic patients, 30 other psychotic patients (other than mood disorders with psychotic features) and 30 normal subjects. Diagnosis of schizophrenia and also other psychoses were based on DSM-IN criteria. Normal subjects have been selected form the staff of Roozbeh hospital randomly."nResults: The difference between the means of motor coordination subscale of neurological soft signs in schizophrenia and other psychotic disorders (other than mood disorders with psychotic features) were significant (P value < 0.04). There were no significant differences between the means of other subscales of neurological soft signs in two groups of patients."nConclusion: There are some disturbances of motor coordination subscale of neurological soft signs in patients with schizophrenia. It seems that, these disturbances are evidence of involvements of basal ganglia, motor cerebral cortex, and cerebellum. So it may be suggested that motor coordination as a marker can be used in differentiation between the schizophrenia and other psychotic disorders.
A systematic review and meta-analysis of neurological soft signs in relatives of people with schizophrenia
Kishen Neelam, Deepak Garg, Max Marshall
BMC Psychiatry , 2011, DOI: 10.1186/1471-244x-11-139
Abstract: A systematic search identified potentially eligible studies in the EMBASE (1980-2011), OVID - MEDLINE (1950-2011) and PsycINFO (1806-2011) databases. Studies were included if they carried out a three-way comparison of levels of soft signs between people with schizophrenia, their first-degree relatives, and normal controls. Data were extracted independently by two reviewers and cross-checked by double entry.After screening 8678 abstracts, seven studies with 1553 participants were identified. Neurological soft signs were significantly more common in first-degree relatives of people with schizophrenia than in controls (pooled standardised mean difference (SMD) 1.24, 95% confidence interval (c.i) 0.59-1.89). Neurological soft signs were also significantly more common in people with schizophrenia than in their first-degree relatives (SMD 0.92, 95% c.i 0.64-1.20). Sensitivity analyses examining the effects of age and group blinding did not significantly alter the main findings.Both hypotheses were confirmed, suggesting that the distribution of neurological soft signs in people with schizophrenia and their first-degree relatives is consistent with the endophenotype criterion of familial association.Neurological soft signs are subtle but observable impairments in motor and sensory functions that are not localized to a specific area of the brain nor characteristic of any specific neurological condition [1]. Typically they are classified into signs relating to: motor co-ordination, sequencing of complex motor tasks, sensori-motor integration, and disinhibition [2]. Neurological soft signs are known to correlate with a range of neuro-cognitive and neuro-anatomical abnormalities, and it has been proposed that they represent an underlying defect in neural integration [3]. Until recently neurological soft signs have been considered of little practical clinical significance, but the prospect that they could be an endophenotype of schizophrenia has led to a resurgence of interest [
Brady, N., McCain, G
Online Journal of Issues in Nursing , 2004,
Abstract: The lifetime emotional, social, and financial consequences experienced by individuals with schizophrenia have significant effects on their families. Family responses to having a family member with schizophrenia include: care burden, fear and embarrassment about illness signs and symptoms, uncertainty about course of the disease, lack of social support, and stigma. Study findings about families in which parents are hostile, critical, or overly involved are equivocal about whether this negative environment contributes to patient relapse. This review summarizes the studies related to the family responses and emotional environment of families who have a member with schizophrenia.
A Genome-Wide Association Study Suggests Novel Loci Associated with a Schizophrenia-Related Brain-Based Phenotype  [PDF]
Johanna Hass, Esther Walton, Holger Kirsten, Jingyu Liu, Lutz Priebe, Christiane Wolf, Nazanin Karbalai, Randy Gollub, Tonya White, Veit Roessner, Kathrin U. Müller, Tomas Paus, Michael N. Smolka, Gunter Schumann, IMAGEN Consortium , Markus Scholz, Sven Cichon, Vince Calhoun, Stefan Ehrlich
PLOS ONE , 2013, DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0064872
Abstract: Patients with schizophrenia and their siblings typically show subtle changes of brain structures, such as a reduction of hippocampal volume. Hippocampal volume is heritable, may explain a variety of cognitive symptoms of schizophrenia and is thus considered an intermediate phenotype for this mental illness. The aim of our analyses was to identify single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNP) related to hippocampal volume without making prior assumptions about possible candidate genes. In this study, we combined genetics, imaging and neuropsychological data obtained from the Mind Clinical Imaging Consortium study of schizophrenia (n = 328). A total of 743,591 SNPs were tested for association with hippocampal volume in a genome-wide association study. Gene expression profiles of human hippocampal tissue were investigated for gene regions of significantly associated SNPs. None of the genetic markers reached genome-wide significance. However, six highly correlated SNPs (rs4808611, rs35686037, rs12982178, rs1042178, rs10406920, rs8170) on chromosome 19p13.11, located within or in close proximity to the genes NR2F6, USHBP1, and BABAM1, as well as four SNPs in three other genomic regions (chromosome 1, 2 and 10) had p-values between 6.75×10?6 and 8.3×10?7. Using existing data of a very recently published GWAS of hippocampal volume and additional data of a multicentre study in a large cohort of adolescents of European ancestry, we found supporting evidence for our results. Furthermore, allelic differences in rs4808611 and rs8170 were highly associated with differential mRNA expression in the cis-acting region. Associations with memory functioning indicate a possible functional importance of the identified risk variants. Our findings provide new insights into the genetic architecture of a brain structure closely linked to schizophrenia. In silico replication, mRNA expression and cognitive data provide additional support for the relevance of our findings. Identification of causal variants and their functional effects may unveil yet unknown players in the neurodevelopment and the pathogenesis of neuropsychiatric disorders.
Neonatal stress-induced affective changes in adolescent Wistar rats: early signs of schizophrenia-like behavior  [PDF]
Carlos E. Girardi,Natália C. Zanta,Deborah Suchecki
Frontiers in Behavioral Neuroscience , 2014, DOI: 10.3389/fnbeh.2014.00319
Abstract: Psychiatric disorders are multifactorial diseases with etiology that may involve genetic factors, early life environment and stressful life events. The neurodevelopmental hypothesis of schizophrenia is based on a wealth of data on increased vulnerability in individuals exposed to insults during the perinatal period. Maternal deprivation disinhibits the adrenocortical response to stress in neonatal rats and has been used as an animal model of schizophrenia. To test if long-term affective consequences of early life stress were influenced by maternal presence, we submitted 10-day old rats, either deprived (for 22 h) or not from their dams, to a stress challenge (i.p. saline injection). Corticosterone plasma levels were measured 2 h after the challenge, whereas another subgroup was assessed for behavior in the open field, elevated plus maze, social investigation and the negative contrast sucrose consumption test in adolescence (postnatal day 45). Maternally deprived rats exhibited increased plasma corticosterone levels which were higher in maternally deprived and stress challenged pups. Social investigation was impaired in maternally deprived rats only, while saline injection, independently of maternal deprivation, was associated with increased anxiety-like behavior in the elevated plus maze and an impaired intake decrement in the negative sucrose contrast. In the open field, center exploration was reduced in all maternally-deprived adolescents and in control rats challenged with saline injection. The most striking finding was that exposure to a stressful stimulus per se, regardless of maternal deprivation, was linked to differential emotional consequences. We therefore propose that besides being a well-known and validated model of schizophrenia in adult rats, the maternal deprivation paradigm could be extended to model early signs of psychiatric dysfunction, and would particularly be a useful tool to detect early signs that resemble schizophrenia.
Endometriosis: A Disease That Remains Enigmatic  [PDF]
Pedro Acién,Irene Velasco
ISRN Obstetrics and Gynecology , 2013, DOI: 10.1155/2013/242149
Abstract: Endometriosis, a gynecologic pathology, is defined by the presence of a tissue similar to uterine endometrium, which is located in places other than physiologically appropriate. These endometrial heterotopic islets contain glands and stroma and are functionally capable of responding to exogenous, endogenous, or local hormonal stimuli. Endometriosis affects 8%–10% of women of reproductive age; in 30% of the women, the condition is associated with primary or secondary infertility. In several instances, endometriosis persists as a minimal or mild disease, or it can resolve on its own. Other cases of endometriosis show severe symptomatology that ends when menopause occurs. Endometriosis can, however, reactivate in several postmenopausal women when iatrogenic or endogenous hormones are present. Endometriosis is occasionally accompanied by malignant ovarian tumors, especially endometrioid and clear cell carcinomas. Its pathogenesis is widely debated, and its variable morphology appears to represent a continuum of individual presentations and progressions. Endometriosis has no pathognomonic signs or symptoms; it is therefore difficult to diagnose. Because of its enigmatic etiopathogenesis, there is currently no satisfactory therapy for all patients with endometriosis. Treatments include medications, surgery, or combined therapies; currently, the only procedures that seem to cure endometriosis are hysterectomy and bilateral salpingo-oophorectomy. In this paper, we review the most controversial and enigmatic aspects of this disease. 1. Introduction Endometriosis is a gynecologic pathology that is frequently considered enigmatic; it is defined by the presence of a tissue similar to uterine endometrium that is located in places other than physiologically appropriate (i.e., uterine endometrial cavity), most commonly in the pelvic cavity, including the ovaries, the uterosacral ligaments, and the pouch of Douglas. These endometrial heterotopic islets contain glands and stroma and are functionally capable of responding to exogenous, endogenous, or local hormonal stimuli. Despite its first description as a pathology three centuries ago and recognition as a clinical entity by Sampson since 1918–1920 [1], the issue of the proper characterization of endometriosis as a disease, a clinical entity or a pathology is still a topic of discussion today. However, endometriosis affects 8%–10% of women of reproductive age; in 30% of these women, endometriosis is associated with primary or secondary infertility [2, 3]. The presentation and evolution of the disease are variable; in
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