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Regional gray matter volume deficits in adolescents with first-episode psychosis.

Janssen J, Reig S, Parellada M, Moreno D, Graell M, Fraguas D, Zabala A, Garcia Vazquez V, Desco M, Arango C
Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry


OBJECTIVE: The current study combined baseline voxel-based morphometry and 1-year clinical follow-up assessments to examine whether and where regional gray matter (GM) volumes differed between a control group and diagnostic subgroups of early-onset first-episode psychosis (FEP). METHOD: Magnetic resonance imaging brain scans were obtained from 70 patients with early-onset FEP, and 51 non-FEP controls. Early-onset FEP was defined as age younger than 18 years and a duration of positive symptoms of less than 6 months. The age range of the sample was 7 to 18 years. After a 1-year follow-up, patients were stratified into three subgroups: schizophrenia (n = 25), bipolar I disorder (n = 20), and other psychoses (n = 25). Regional GM volumes of each patient subgroup were compared with those of the control group. RESULTS: A follow-up diagnosis of schizophrenia was associated with GM volume deficits in the left medial and left middle frontal gyrus; bipolar I disorder was related to a GM volume deficit in the left medial frontal gyrus; and not having a follow-up diagnosis of schizophrenia or bipolar disorder was associated with smaller bilateral GM volumes in the insula and right middle occipital gyrus. CONCLUSIONS: Left medial frontal GM volume deficits were common in the groups with schizophrenia and bipolar I disorder, which may point to shared underlying pathological findings.

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