Structural network disorganization in subjects at clinical high risk for psychosis

André Schmidt*, Nicolas A. Crossley, Fabienne Harrisberger, Renata Smieskova, Claudia Lenz, Anita Riecher-Rössler, Undine E. Lang, Philip McGuire, Paolo Fusar-Poli, Stefan Borgwardt

*Korrespondierende/r Autor/-in für diese Arbeit
35 Zitate (Scopus)


Previous network studies in chronic schizophrenia patients revealed impaired structural organization of the brain's richclub members, a set of highly interconnected hub regions that play an important integrative role for global brain communication. Moreover, impaired rich-club connectivity has also been found in unaffected siblings of schizophrenia patients, suggesting that abnormal rich-club connectivity is related to familiar, possibly reflecting genetic, vulnerability for schizophrenia. However, no study has yet investigated whether structural rich-club organization is also impaired in individuals with a clinical risk syndrome for psychosis. Diffusion tensor imaging and probabilistic tractography was used to construct structural whole-brain networks in 24 healthy controls and 24 subjects with an at-risk mental state (ARMS). Graph theory was applied to quantify the structural rich-club organization and global network properties. ARMS subjects revealed a significantly altered structural rich-club organization compared with the control group. The disruption of rich-club organization was associated with the severity of negative psychotic symptoms and led to an elevated level of modularity in ARMS subjects. This study shows that abnormal structural rich-club organization is already evident in clinical high-risk subjects for psychosis and further demonstrates the impact of richclub disorganization on global network communication. Together with previous evidence in chronic schizophrenia patients and unaffected siblings, our findings suggest that abnormal structural rich-club organization may reflect an endophenotypic marker of psychosis.

ZeitschriftSchizophrenia bulletin
Seiten (von - bis)583-591
PublikationsstatusVeröffentlicht - 2017

Strategische Forschungsbereiche und Zentren

  • Forschungsschwerpunkt: Gehirn, Hormone, Verhalten - Center for Brain, Behavior and Metabolism (CBBM)


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