A follow-up MRI study of the superior temporal subregions in schizotypal disorder and first-episode schizophrenia.Schizophr Res 2010; 119(1-3):65-74SR
While longitudinal magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) studies have demonstrated progressive gray matter reduction of the superior temporal gyrus (STG) during the early phases of schizophrenia, it remains unknown whether patients with schizotypal features exhibit similar STG changes. In this study, longitudinal MRI data were obtained from 18 patients with first-episode schizophrenia, 13 patients with schizotypal disorder, and 20 healthy controls. The volumes of the STG and its subregions [planum polare (PP), Heschl gyrus (HG), planum temporale (PT), rostral STG, and caudal STG] were measured on baseline and follow-up (mean: 2.7 years) scans and were compared across groups. At the baseline, both the schizophrenia and schizotypal patients had smaller left PT and left caudal STG than the controls. In a longitudinal comparison, the schizophrenia patients showed significant gray matter reduction of the STG over time (left: -2.8%/year; right: -1.5%/year) compared with the schizotypal patients (left: -0.6%/year; right: -0.3%/year) and controls (left: 0.0%/year; right: -0.1%/year) without a prominent effect of subregion or type of antipsychotic (typical/atypical). In the schizophrenia patients, greater annual volume reductions of the left PP and right PT were correlated with less improvement of positive psychotic symptoms. A higher cumulative dose of antipsychotics during follow-up in schizophrenia was significantly correlated with less severe gray matter reductions in the left PT and bilateral caudal STG. Our findings suggest that the left posterior STG subregions are commonly reduced in diseases of the schizophrenia spectrum; whereas, schizophrenia patients exhibit further progressive STG changes associated with overt psychosis in the early years of the illness.