Research Papers:

Distinct pattern of cerebral blood flow alterations specific to schizophrenics experiencing auditory verbal hallucinations with and without insight: a pilot study

Rixing Jing, Jiangjie Huang, Deguo Jiang, Xiaodong Lin, Xiaolei Ma, Hongjun Tian, Jie Li and Chuanjun Zhuo _

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Oncotarget. 2018; 9:6763-6770. https://doi.org/10.18632/oncotarget.23631

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Rixing Jing1,2,*, Jiangjie Huang3,*, Deguo Jiang3,*, Xiaodong Lin3, Xiaolei Ma4, Hongjun Tian4, Jie Li5 and Chuanjun Zhuo3,5

1National Laboratory of Pattern Recognition, Institute of Automation, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, China

2University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, China

3Department of Psychological Medicine, Wenzhou Seventh People’s Hospital, Wenzhou, Zhejiang Province, China

4Department of Psychological Medicine, Tianjin Anning Hospital, Tianjin, China

5Department of Psychiatric Neuroimaging Laboratory, Tianjin Anding Hospital, Tianjin Mental Health Center, Teaching Hospital of Tianjin Medical University, Tianjin, China

*These authors have contributed equally to this work

Correspondence to:

Chuanjun Zhuo, email: [email protected]

Jie Li, email: [email protected]

Keywords: schizophrenia; auditory verbal hallucination; insight; cerebral blood flow

Received: August 01, 2017     Accepted: November 29, 2017     Published: December 23, 2017


Schizophrenia is associated with widespread and complex cerebral blood flow (CBF) disturbance. Auditory verbal hallucinations (AVH) and insight are the core symptoms of schizophrenia. However, to the best of our knowledge, very few studies have assessed the CBF characteristics of the AVH suffered by schizophrenic patients with and without insight. Based on our previous findings, Using a 3D pseudo-continuous ASL (pcASL) technique, we investigated the differences in AVH-related CBF alterations in schizophrenia patients with and without insight. We used statistical parametric mapping (SPM8) and statistical non-parametric mapping (SnPM13) to perform the fMRI analysis. We found that AVH-schizophrenia patients without insight showed an increased CBF in the left temporal pole and a decreased CBF in the right middle frontal gyrus when compared to AVH-schizophrenia patients with insight. Our novel findings suggest that AVH-schizophrenia patients without insight possess a more complex CBF disturbance. Simultaneously, our findings also incline to support the idea that the CBF aberrant in some specific brain regions may be the common neural basis of insight and AVH. Our findings support the mostly current hypotheses regarding AVH to some extent. Although our findings come from a small sample, it provide the evidence that indicate us to conduct a larger study to thoroughly explore the mechanisms of schizophrenia, especially the core symptoms of AVHs and insight.

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