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Brooks S.J.,Uppsala University | ODaly O.G.,Kings College London | Uher R.,Kings College London | Friederich H.-C.,Center for Psychosocial Medicine | And 6 more authors.
PLoS ONE | Year: 2011

Background: Previous fMRI studies show that women with eating disorders (ED) have differential neural activation to viewing food images. However, despite clinical differences in their responses to food, differential neural activation to thinking about eating food, between women with anorexia nervosa (AN) and bulimia nervosa (BN) is not known. Methods: We compare 50 women (8 with BN, 18 with AN and 24 age-matched healthy controls [HC]) while they view food images during functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI). Results: In response to food (vs non-food) images, women with BN showed greater neural activation in the visual cortex, right dorsolateral prefrontal cortex, right insular cortex and precentral gyrus, women with AN showed greater activation in the right dorsolateral prefrontal cortex, cerebellum and right precuneus. HC women activated the cerebellum, right insular cortex, right medial temporal lobe and left caudate. Direct comparisons revealed that compared to HC, the BN group showed relative deactivation in the bilateral superior temporal gyrus/insula, and visual cortex, and compared to AN had relative deactivation in the parietal lobe and dorsal posterior cingulate cortex, but greater activation in the caudate, superior temporal gyrus, right insula and supplementary motor area. Conclusions: Women with AN and BN activate top-down cognitive control in response to food images, yet women with BN have increased activation in reward and somatosensory regions, which might impinge on cognitive control over food consumption and binge eating. © 2011 Brooks et al.

Brooks S.J.,Uppsala University | Brooks S.J.,Kings College London | O'Daly O.,Kings College London | Uher R.,Kings College London | And 7 more authors.
PLoS ONE | Year: 2012

Background: Women with anorexia nervosa (AN) have aberrant cognitions about food and altered activity in prefrontal cortical and somatosensory regions to food images. However, differential effects on the brain when thinking about eating food between healthy women and those with AN is unknown. Methods: Functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) examined neural activation when 42 women thought about eating the food shown in images: 18 with AN (11 RAN, 7 BPAN) and 24 age-matched controls (HC). Results: Group contrasts between HC and AN revealed reduced activation in AN in the bilateral cerebellar vermis, and increased activation in the right visual cortex. Preliminary comparisons between AN subtypes and healthy controls suggest differences in cortical and limbic regions. Conclusions: These preliminary data suggest that thinking about eating food shown in images increases visual and prefrontal cortical neural responses in females with AN, which may underlie cognitive biases towards food stimuli and ruminations about controlling food intake. Future studies are needed to explicitly test how thinking about eating activates restraint cognitions, specifically in those with restricting vs. binge-purging AN subtypes. © 2012 Brooks et al.

Kaiser S.,University of Zurich | Kaiser S.,Center for Psychosocial Medicine | Heekeren K.,University of Zurich | Simon J.J.,Center for Psychosocial Medicine
Psychopathology | Year: 2011

Negative symptoms have been considered to be specific to schizophrenia or a subtype of schizophrenia: the deficit syndrome. In other words, these symptoms have been considered to be categorically different from other forms of human behavior and experience, whether they occur in healthy persons or patients with other psychiatric disorders. In this paper, we advocate a dimensional approach to negative symptoms, which is supported by two main arguments. First, enduring negative symptoms can even be observed in a variety of psychiatric disorders and they are not specific to schizophrenia. Second, we review evidence that negative symptoms show a continuous distribution from apparently healthy subjects to those with a fully developed clinical syndrome. Although the evidence does not allow for a definite decision concerning the dimensional distribution of negative symptoms, it certainly justifies exploring a dimensional approach with respect to its clinical and scientific utility. Understanding negative symptoms as a variation of normal mental processes will strengthen the development of neurocognitive models and treatment approaches. Copyright © 2011 S. Karger AG, Basel.

Simon J.J.,Center for Psychosocial Medicine | Cordeiro S.A.,Center for Psychosocial Medicine | Weber M.-A.,University of Heidelberg | Friederich H.-C.,Center for Psychosocial Medicine | And 4 more authors.
Schizophrenia Bulletin | Year: 2015

Dysfunctional patterns of activation in brain reward networks have been suggested as a core element in the pathophysiology of schizophrenia. However, it remains unclear whether this dysfunction is specific to schizophrenia or can be continuously observed across persons with different levels of nonclinical and clinical symptom expression. Therefore, we sought to investigate whether the pattern of reward system dysfunction is consistent with a dimensional or categorical model of psychosis-like symptom expression. 23 patients with schizophrenia and 37 healthy control participants with varying levels of psychosis-like symptoms, separated into 3 groups of low, medium, and high symptom expression underwent event-related functional magnetic resonance imaging while performing a Cued Reinforcement Reaction Time task. We observed lower activation in the ventral striatum during the expectation of high vs no reward to be associated with higher symptom expression across all participants. No significant difference between patients with schizophrenia and healthy participants with high symptom expression was found. However, connectivity between the ventral striatum and the medial orbitofrontal cortex was specifically reduced in patients with schizophrenia. Dysfunctional local activation of the ventral striatum depends less on diagnostic category than on the degree of symptom expression, therefore showing a pattern consistent with a psychosis continuum. In contrast, aberrant connectivity in the reward system is specific to patients with schizophrenia, thereby supporting a categorical view. Thus, the results of the present study provide evidence for both continuous and discontinuous neural substrates of symptom expression across patients with schizophrenia and the general population. © 2015 The Author.

Moritz S.,University of Hamburg | Veckenstedt R.,University of Hamburg | Andreou C.,University of Hamburg | Bohn F.,University of Hamburg | And 10 more authors.
JAMA Psychiatry | Year: 2014

IMPORTANCE Cognitive interventions increasingly complement psychopharmacological treatment to enhance symptomatic and functional outcome in schizophrenia. Metacognitive training (MCT) is targeted at cognitive biases involved in the pathogenesis of delusions. Copyright 2014 American Medical Association. All rights reserved.MAIN OUTCOMES AND MEASURES The primary outcome measurewas a delusion score derived from the Positive and Negative Syndrome Scale (PANSS). The PANSS positive syndrome and total scores, the Psychotic Symptom Rating Scales, the jumping to conclusions bias, self-esteem, and quality of life served as secondary outcome measures. RESULTS The intention-to-treat analyses demonstrated that patients in the MCT group had significantly greater reductions in the core PANSS delusion score, after 3 years compared with the control group (η2 partial = .037; P = .05). Among the secondary outcomes, the intention-to-treat analyses also demonstrated that patients in the MCT group had significantly greater reductions in the PANSS positive syndrome score (η2 partial = .055; P = .02) and the Psychotic Symptom Rating Scales delusion score (η2 partial = .109; P = .001). Significant group differences at the 3-year follow-up were also found on measures of self-esteem and quality of life, which did not distinguish groups at earlier assessment points. Attention was improved in the neuropsychological training group relative to the MCT group. The completion rate was 61.3%after 3 years. CONCLUSIONS AND RELEVANCE Metacognitive training demonstrated sustained effects in the reduction of delusions, which were over and above the effects of antipsychotic medication. Moreover, there were some unanticipated ("sleeper") effects as both self-esteem and quality of life were improved after 3 years. Effects on self-esteem and well-being were found even in the absence of an improvement on the jumping to conclusions bias.OBJECTIVE To examine the long-term efficacy of group MCT for schizophrenia in order to explore whether previously established effects were sustained. DESIGN, SETTING, AND PARTICIPANTS A 2-center, randomized, controlled, assessor-blind, parallel group trial was conducted. A total of 150 inpatients or outpatients with DSM-IV diagnoses of schizophrenia spectrum disorders were enrolled. All patients were prescribed antipsychotic medication. The second follow-up assessment took place 3 years later after the intervention phase was terminated.INTERVENTIONS Group MCT targeting cognitive biases vs neuropsychological training (COGPACK). Patients received a maximum of 16 sessions.TRIAL REGISTRATION isrctn.org Identifier: ISRCTN95205723.

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