Poor Nutrition at Age 3 and Schizotypal Personality at Age 23: The Mediating Role of Age 11 Cognitive Functioning
ABSTRACT Poor prenatal nutrition has been associated with schizophrenia spectrum disorders in the Netherlands and China, and it has been suggested that perinatal and postnatal nutritional factors lead to the development of schizophrenia and the exhibition of schizotypal traits later in life. There appears to be no prior research on the existence of possible factors that may mediate the relationship between malnutrition and schizophrenia spectrum disorders or whether this association is a direct one. The authors tested the hypothesis that low IQ mediates the relationship between early childhood malnutrition and adult schizotypal personality.
Participants were drawn from a birth cohort of 1,795 boys and girls who were followed prospectively. Objective indicators of malnutrition (anemia and stunting) were assessed at age 3. Verbal and performance intelligence were assessed at age 11, and schizotypal personality was assessed at age 23.
Both stunting and anemia at age 3 were associated with low IQ at age 11. Low performance IQ at age 11 was associated with increased interpersonal and disorganized features of schizotypal personality at age 23. Poor performance IQ was found to mediate the relationship between poor nutrition at age 3 and interpersonal and disorganized features of schizotypy at age 23. Findings in female participants were replicated in male participants.
Given that poor nutrition is an alterable risk factor, these findings suggest that nutritional enhancements may improve brain functioning and possibly reduce some features of schizotypal personality disorder.
- SourceAvailable from: Husamettin Vatansev
- [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Individuals with schizotypal personality disorder (SPD) often present with cognitive impairment similar, but of a lesser magnitude to, what is seen in schizophrenia. Cognitive dysfunction combined with social and perceptual disturbances, which are the hallmarks of this disorder, are directly related to substantially lower functioning. There is no FDA-approved medication for cognitive deficits in SPD; however, potential agents, including α2a and dopamine agonists, are under investigation. Cognitive remediation therapy (CRT) is a behavioral treatment that has been shown to improve cognitive and psychosocial functioning in individuals with schizophrenia. Application of CRT in this population is novel and more large-scale studies are needed, but this treatment holds promise for the cognitive and social deficits of SPD. There may be a synergy between cognitive remediation and cognitive enhancers such as the α2a agonist guanfacine; research in this area is nascent. Lifestyle modifications such as the use of memory aids, planners, and structured schedules, as well as exercise, may be beneficial for cognitive functioning in this population. Additionally, social skills training in a psychotherapeutic setting can be helpful. Patients frequently present with comorbid mood and anxiety symptoms, and standard SSRI treatment to ameliorate symptoms can have a positive secondary effect on cognitive functioning. For the patient with psychotic-like features, treatment with atypical antipsychotics may also improve overall functioning.12/2014; 1(4). DOI:10.1007/s40501-014-0027-0
- [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: This chapter surveys the existing state of knowledge about personality disorders (PDs) in the first two decades of life and proceeds in seven sections. The first section reviews the history of PDs in the DSM system, summarizes the nature of the PD diagnoses in DSM-IV and DSM-5 Section II, and addresses the still-controversial status of PDs in youth. The second section offers a conceptual framework for describing and explaining the nature of personality pathology in youth; this framework takes into account the ways that personality traits, mental representations, coping strategies, and life narratives may become disturbed in PDs earlier in life. The third section presents several dimensional personality models as diagnostic alternatives to the categorical model of PDs and reviews the trait-based dimensional model for PD offered in Section III of DSM-5. The fourth section of this chapter provides a synopsis of recent research on the epidemiology of PDs, comorbidity among PDs, and links between PDs and other psychiatric disorders. The fifth section charts what is known about the stability of early personality pathology and associated life outcomes. The sixth section surveys what is known about the etiology of PDs in general in childhood and adolescence and addresses the etiology of specific PDs: Cluster A PDs (paranoid, schizoid, and schizotypal); borderline PD, antisocial PD, psychopathy, and narcissism; and the Cluster C PDs (avoidant, dependent, and obsessive-compulsive). The seventh section concludes the chapter with suggestions for future research on PDs in youth.Child Psychopathology, Third edited by E. J. Mash & R. A. Barkley, 07/2014: chapter Personality Disorders in Children and Adolescents: pages 848-896; Guilford., ISBN: 978-1-4625-1668-1