PubMed | d Institute Saint Pierre, University of Montréal, a Hopital du Sacre Coeur de Montreal and nter Monteregien Of Readaptation
Type: Journal Article | Journal: Cognitive neuropsychiatry | Year: 2015
Individuals with schizophrenia and affective disorders show relatively intact implicit memory as compared to declarative memory. Implicit memory is usually assessed with skill learning and priming tasks. Whereas priming is thought to involve storage changes in the posterior neocortex, skill learning is thought to rely more on the corticostriatal pathway. Since frontostriatal and frontotemporal dysfunctions are, respectively, found in schizophrenia and affective disorders, we hypothesised that individuals with schizophrenia and first-episode psychosis would exhibit disturbances in skill learning, but not priming.Thirty-five patients (11 first-episode psychosis; 11 schizophrenia; 13 affective disorders) and 10 controls completed a procedural learning and priming task. Participants had to identify fragmented images throughout five training sessions. The improvement of the threshold at which the images could be identified between the first and last session was used as an index of procedural learning. In a final session, the identification thresholds for old and new images were compared to assess the priming effect.Whereas individuals with schizophrenia and first-episode psychosis showed impaired skill learning, the priming effect was similar in all groups.Even though some aspects of learning and memory are affected in schizophrenia, our results suggest that the posterior cortical pathway remains efficient at modulating the priming effect. This intact ability could be used to guide the elaboration of new rehabilitation programmes.