Fusiform Gyrus Volume Reduction and Facial Recognition in Chronic Schizophrenia

Clinical Neuroscience Division, Laboratory of Neuroscience, Department of Psychiatry, Boston VA Healthcare System, Brockton, MA 02301, USA.
Archives of General Psychiatry (Impact Factor: 14.48). 05/2003; 60(4):349-55. DOI: 10.1001/archpsyc.60.4.349
Source: PubMed


The fusiform gyrus (FG), or occipitotemporal gyrus, is thought to subserve the processing and encoding of faces. Of note, several studies have reported that patients with schizophrenia show deficits in facial processing. It is thus hypothesized that the FG might be one brain region underlying abnormal facial recognition in schizophrenia. The objectives of this study were to determine whether there are abnormalities in gray matter volumes for the anterior and the posterior FG in patients with chronic schizophrenia and to investigate relationships between FG subregions and immediate and delayed memory for faces.
Patients were recruited from the Boston VA Healthcare System, Brockton Division, and control subjects were recruited through newspaper advertisement. Study participants included 21 male patients diagnosed as having chronic schizophrenia and 28 male controls. Participants underwent high-spatial-resolution magnetic resonance imaging, and facial recognition memory was evaluated. Main outcome measures included anterior and posterior FG gray matter volumes based on high-spatial-resolution magnetic resonance imaging, a detailed and reliable manual delineation using 3-dimensional information, and correlation coefficients between FG subregions and raw scores on immediate and delayed facial memory derived from the Wechsler Memory Scale III.
Patients with chronic schizophrenia had overall smaller FG gray matter volumes (10%) than normal controls. Additionally, patients with schizophrenia performed more poorly than normal controls in both immediate and delayed facial memory tests. Moreover, the degree of poor performance on delayed memory for faces was significantly correlated with the degree of bilateral anterior FG reduction in patients with schizophrenia.
These results suggest that neuroanatomic FG abnormalities underlie at least some of the deficits associated with facial recognition in schizophrenia.

Download full-text


Available from: Martha E Shenton,
17 Reads
  • Source
    • "Fahim et al. (2004) found impaired activations of cortical areas related to emotional memory in a discordant twin pair for schizophrenia. Brain structures associated with the processing of facial information, such as the fusiform gyrus, may be especially vulnerable (Onitsuka et al., 2003; Mancini-Marie et al., 2004). Platek et al. (2005) demonstrated a relationship between abnormal medial prefrontal activation, schizotypal traits, and Eyes Test performance, which raises the possibility that subclinical symptoms may be present in children at risk of schizophrenia. "
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Offspring of individuals with psychoses sometimes display an abnormal development of cognition, language, motor performance, social adaptation, and emotional functions. The aim of this study was to investigate the ability of children of mothers with schizophrenia (n = 28) and bipolar disorder (n = 23) to understand mental states of others using the Eyes Test (folk psychology or "theory of mind") and physical causal interactions of inanimate objects (folk physics). Compared with healthy controls (n = 29), the children of mothers with schizophrenia displayed significantly impaired performances on the Eyes Test but not on the folk physics test when corrected for IQ. The children of mothers with bipolar disorder did not differ from the controls. The folk physics test showed a significant covariance with IQ, whereas the Eyes Test did not exhibit such covariance. These results suggest that the attribution of mental states, but not the interpretation of causal interaction of objects, is impaired in offspring of individuals with schizophrenia, which may contribute to social dysfunctions.
    PeerJ 03/2014; 2(suppl 20):e330. DOI:10.7717/peerj.330 · 2.11 Impact Factor
  • Source
    • "It suggested patients diagnosed with schizophrenia displayed logical deficits, which led to the symptoms such as hallucination and delusion. Several studies have demonstrated it [55,56], just as Hall et al. [57] found the patients with schizophrenia showed a relative lower overall connectivity between the fusiform gyrus and amygdale and Onitsuka et al. [58] found performance deficits on both immediate and delayed facial memory tests significantly correlated with the degree of bilateral anterior fusiform gyri activity reduction in patients with schizophrenia. Besides, we found the increased functional connection of fusiform gyrus with the orbital part of superior frontal cortex, the gyrus rectus and the inferior temporal gyrus in Table 2, just as Jafri et al. [53] and Zhou et al. [59] found that some functional connections increased in schizophrenia. "
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Schizophrenia is a severe mental illness associated with the symptoms such as hallucination and delusion. The objective of this study was to investigate the abnormal resting-state functional connectivity patterns of schizophrenic patients which could identify furthest patients from healthy controls. The whole-brain resting-state fMRI was performed on patients diagnosed with schizophrenia (n = 22) and on age- and gender-matched, healthy control subjects (n = 22). To differentiate schizophrenic individuals from healthy controls, the multivariate classification analysis was employed. The weighted brain regions were got by reconstruction arithmetic to extract highly discriminative functional connectivity information. The results showed that 93.2% (p < 0.001) of the subjects were correctly classified via the leave-one-out cross-validation method. And most of the altered functional connections identified located within the visual cortical-, default-mode-, and sensorimotor network. Furthermore, in reconstruction arithmetic, the fusiform gyrus exhibited the greatest amount of weight. This study demonstrates that schizophrenic patients may be successfully differentiated from healthy subjects by using whole-brain resting-state fMRI, and the fusiform gyrus may play an important functional role in the physiological symptoms manifested by schizophrenic patients. The brain region of great weight may be the problematic region of information exchange in schizophrenia. Thus, our result may provide insights into the identification of potentially effective biomarkers for the clinical diagnosis of schizophrenia.
    BioMedical Engineering OnLine 08/2012; 11(1):50. DOI:10.1186/1475-925X-11-50 · 1.43 Impact Factor
  • Source
    • "Neuroanatomical, functional, and pathological abnormalities of the FG have been reported in schizophrenia. For example, structural MRI studies have demonstrated reduced FG gray matter volume in chronic schizophrenia (e.g., Onitsuka et al., 2003). A recent fMRI study reported that schizophrenics exhibited lower blood oxygenation level-dependent activation in the right FFA during the memorization of faces (Walther et al., 2009). "
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: There is accumulating evidence that schizophrenics may have deficits in facial recognition, which has been related to disease-specific disturbances in normal social interaction. Neurophysiologically, face inversion results in an amplitude increase of the event-related potential (ERP) component N170. This face inversion effect (FIE) presumably reflects a disruption of face-specific configuration processing. The present study investigated FIE and the associations between social functioning and N170 in patients with schizophrenia. The subjects consisted of 15 schizophrenics and 15 controls. Event-related potentials (ERPs) to upright and inverted neutral faces and cars were recorded. The relationships between the Social Functioning Scale (SFS) scores and N170 amplitude to upright faces or cars were also evaluated. Normal controls exhibited a significant FIE of the N170 amplitude, while schizophrenics showed no FIE. In both normal controls and schizophrenics, no inversion effect was observed for car stimuli. For face stimuli, schizophrenics showed significant bilateral N170 reduction; additionally, in schizophrenics, but not in controls, the SFS was significantly correlated with N170 amplitudes to upright faces. These results indicate face-specific configuration processing deficits and significant associations between face-N170 reduction and social dysfunction in schizophrenia. Abnormal face-specific configuration processing may underlie some of the social dysfunctions in schizophrenia.
    Clinical Neurophysiology 03/2012; 123(9):1762-8. DOI:10.1016/j.clinph.2012.01.024 · 3.10 Impact Factor
Show more