Superior temporal metabolic changes related to auditory hallucinations: a 31P-MR spectroscopy study in antipsychotic-free schizophrenia patients
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Structural deficits in the superior temporal cortex and transverse temporal gyri appear to be related to auditory hallucinations in schizophrenia, which are a key symptom of this disorder. However, the cellular and neurochemical underpinnings are poorly understood and hardly studied in vivo. We used 31P-MRS (magnetic resonance spectroscopy) with chemical shift imaging to assess the association between left superior temporal cortex metabolism and severity of auditory hallucinations in 29 schizophrenia patients off antipsychotics. Hallucinations scores derived from the Scale for the Assessment of Positive Symptoms showed significant positive correlations with both measures of phospholipids (phosphomonoesters and phosphodiesters), and energy (inorganic phosphate and phosphocreatine, but not adenosine tri-phosphate) metabolism in left superior temporal gyrus/Heschl gyrus voxels. There was no correlation of metabolites in these regions with formal thought disorder, a symptom also linked to superior temporal pathology, thus suggesting symptom specificity. Our findings provide a link between established structural deficits and neurochemical pathology related to membrane pathology and markers of general metabolic turnover.
KeywordsAuditory hallucination Brain Magnetic resonance spectroscopy (MRS) Phospholipid Psychosis Schizophrenia
Conflict of interest
The authors declare that they have no relevant conflicts of interest to declare.
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