Schizophrenia and Schizophrenia-Spectrum Personality Disorders in the First-Degree Relatives of Children With Schizophrenia

Department of Psychiatry, Virginia Commonwealth University, Ричмонд, Virginia, United States
Archives of General Psychiatry (Impact Factor: 14.48). 07/2001; 58(6):581-8. DOI: 10.1001/archpsyc.58.6.581
Source: PubMed


This study tested the hypothesis that childhood-onset schizophrenia (COS) is a variant of adult-onset schizophrenia (AOS) by determining if first-degree relatives of COS probands have an increased risk for schizophrenia and schizotypal and paranoid personality disorders.
Relatives of COS probands (n = 148) were compared with relatives of attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) (n = 368) and community control (n = 206) probands. Age-appropriate structured diagnostic interviews were used to assign DSM-III-R diagnoses to probands and their relatives. Family psychiatric history was elicited from multiple informants. Diagnoses of relatives were made blind to information about probands' diagnoses. Final consensus diagnoses, which integrated family history, direct interview information, and medical records, are reported in this article.
There was an increased lifetime morbid risk for schizophrenia (4.95% +/- 2.16%) and schizotypal personality disorder (4.20% +/- 2.06%) in the parents of COS probands compared with parents of ADHD (0.45% +/- 0.45%, 0.91% +/- 0.63%) and community control (0%) probands. The parents of COS probands diagnosed as having schizophrenia had an early age of first onset of schizophrenia. Risk for avoidant personality disorder (9.41% +/- 3.17%) was increased in the parents of COS probands compared with parents of community controls (1.67% +/- 1.17%).
The psychiatric disorders that do and do not aggregate in the parents of COS probands are remarkably similar to the disorders that do and do not aggregate in the parents of adults with schizophrenia in modern family studies. These findings provide compelling support for the hypothesis of etiological continuity between COS and AOS.

Download full-text


Available from: Robert F Asarnow
  • Source
    • "tional support that these results provide for the psychometric assess - ment of schizotypy by means of self - report . This is especially noteworthy , as the majority of previous research has focused on individuals deemed " at risk " for schizophrenia via different means , such as genetic predisposition or family history ( Kendler et al . , 1993 ; Asarnow et al . , 2001 ; Hans et al . , 2004 ) ."
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Certain Personality Disorders (PDs) have been found to be present in the prodromal phase of schizophrenia at a higher rate than other personality disorders. Although schizotypal, paranoid, and schizoid PDs are traditionally viewed as spectra for schizophrenia, research suggests that avoidant PD should be included in this group (e.g., Fogelson et al., 2007). The present study examines whether a sample of psychometrically identified schizotypes (SZT) have higher incidence of schizophrenia-spectrum PDs, as well as more symptoms of these PDs, in general, than does a matched comparison (MC) sample. Eighty-five SZT and 78 MC participants were administered the Personality DisorderInterview for DSM-IV (PDI-IV) to assess PD symptoms and diagnoses. Results indicate that the SZT group evidenced significantly more symptoms of avoidant, schizoid, paranoid, and schizotypal PDs than did the MC group. Further, there were significant differences in the incidence of these PDs between the groups. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.
    Full-text · Article · Feb 2015 · Psychiatry Research
  • Source
    • "It is generally acknowledged that schizophrenia falls on a spectrum of related conditions, starting with the subclinical personality construct of schizotypy, which refers to traits and behaviors exhibited in schizophrenia but with minimal functional impairment (Lenzenweger, 2010; Raballo and Parnas, 2011). Because schizotypy shares genetic liability with schizophrenia (Appels et al., 2004; Asarnow et al., 2001), investigating neurocognitive deficits in this population can provide a window into the neuropathology of schizophrenia without the accompanying confounds. "
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Individuals with schizophrenia exhibit a range of cognitive impairments, including tasks assessing theory of mind (ToM) and autobiographical memory (AM). This study appears to be the first to examine how ToM and AM abilities interact in relation to schizotypy. Forty-seven undergraduate students reporting a wide continuous range of scores on the Schizotypal Personality Questionnaire (SPQ) completed a measure of ToM and a measure assessing various phenomenological qualities of AM. Female participants exhibited a negative correlation between the ToM score and the SPQ total score and a positive correlation between enhanced phenomenological qualities of AM and the SPQ disorganized factor score. No statistically significant relationships were found for male participants. ToM was negatively correlated with AM across the entire sample, which was not moderated by sex or schizotypy. It is possible that distinct underlying mechanisms account for the observed sex differences on ToM and AM performance in schizophrenia-related conditions.
    Full-text · Article · Feb 2015 · Journal of Nervous & Mental Disease
  • Source
    • "Early onset schizophrenia (EOS; defined as onset of psychotic symptoms by age 18) is a less frequent and, in some cases, more severe variant of the disorder than its adult-onset counterpart (Asarnow et al., 1994; Nicolson et al., 2000; Vyas et al., 2010a). EOS shows diagnostic continuity with adult-onset schizophrenia (Nicolson and Rapoport, 1999; Asarnow et al., 2001; Nicolson et al., 1999, 2003; Gochman et al., 2004), but may be associated with delay in crucial developmental stages, increased rate of cytogenetic anomalies, greater clinical severity and worse functional outcome (Hollis, 2000; Fleischhaker et al., 2005; Vyas et al., 2007, 2012a; Rapoport et al., 2012; Vyas and Gogtay, 2012). Generalized cognitive deficits have been reported in adolescents with EOS across a broad array of ability domains; the largest effect sizes being reported in general intellectual ability, verbal learning and memory, and executive function (Kenny et al., 1997; Roofeh et al., 2006; Vyas et al., 2010b). "
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: A common T/C polymorphism within the ninth intron of the KIBRA gene (rs17070145) is thought to influence memory in humans. Since cognitive impairment, including memory, is a core feature of schizophrenia, we attempted to investigate this association in an independent sample of adolescent patients with early-onset schizophrenia (EOS; onset before age 18) probands and their healthy siblings. In a sample of 25 pairs of EOS proband-healthy full sibling, we sought to investigate the association of KIBRA with memory performance. Episodic memory was measured using immediate and delayed recall measures of the California Verbal Learning Test. EOS underperformed at immediate and delayed recall compared with siblings. In a combined analysis (TT vs. TC/CC) assuming a C dominant model of inheritance, we found a main effect of genotype where individuals with TT genotype outperformed non-TT-carriers at immediate and delayed recall. A genotype by group interaction showed that EOS with TT genotype did not show a memory advantage over siblings with TT or non-TT-carriers at immediate or delayed recall. Siblings with TT genotype showed enhanced immediate recall (not delayed recall) compared with non-TT-carriers. This study demonstrates an association between the KIBRA gene and episodic memory (immediate free recall) and suggests a differential effect of this genetic variant in EOS and healthy siblings.
    Full-text · Article · Jul 2014 · Psychiatry Research
Show more