The effect of odor valence on olfactory performance in schizophrenia patients, unaffected relatives and at-risk youth

Division of Medical Psychology, Department of Psychiatry & Behavioral Sciences, The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, MD, USA. Electronic address: .
Journal of Psychiatric Research (Impact Factor: 3.96). 08/2013; 47(11). DOI: 10.1016/j.jpsychires.2013.07.014
Source: PubMed


Given the presence of odor identification impairment in individuals with schizophrenia and recent evidence of aberrant odor hedonic processing, the aim of this investigation was to examine the influence of valence and intensity on odor identification in schizophrenia patients, their first-degree family members, and young persons at clinical risk for psychosis. Participants completed the 16-item Sniffin' Stick Odor Identification Test. A logistic regression was conducted to assess the influence of valence and intensity on odor identification accuracy. Identification performance in the schizophrenia patients and youths at clinical risk for psychosis was significantly influenced by odor valence, but not intensity. Identification accuracy in first-degree family members was not influenced by valence or intensity. These data suggest that abnormalities in odor valence perception may represent an environmentally-mediated marker for hedonic disturbance that could have predictive utility in future conversion to psychosis. Further research examining the utility of odor valence measures as markers for psychosis risk is warranted.

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Available from: Paul J Moberg, Apr 17, 2014
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    • "our use of Craigslist) and characteristics associated with participation in a time-intensive research study, which may obscure a potential deficit in the CHR subjects with whom they are compared. This may also explain our prior finding of equivalent smell identification between CHR patients and controls in a subgroup of our current cohort (Kayser et al., 2013), who were assessed with Sniffin' Sticks (Hummel et al., 1997), which is in contrast to a cross-sectional study of CHR subjects using the same method (Kamath et al., 2013). Our lack of statistically significant difference in smell identification among those at-risk subjects who later developed schizophrenia may be an issue of statistical power, especially in the context of large variance in performance within groups. "
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