Aberrant connectivity in auditory precision encoding in schizophrenia spectrum disorder and across the continuum of psychotic-like experiences

Kit Melissa Larsen, Ilvana Dzafic, Hayley Darke, Holly Pertile, Olivia Carter, Suresh Sundram, Marta I. Garrido

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)


Background: The ability to generate a precise internal model of statistical regularities is impaired in schizophrenia. Predictive coding accounts of schizophrenia suggest that psychotic symptoms may be explained by a failure to build precise beliefs or a model of the world. The precision of this model may vary with context. For example, in a noisy environment the model will be more imprecise compared to a model built in an environment with lower noise. However compelling, this idea has not yet been empirically studied in schizophrenia. Methods: In this study, 62 participants engaged in a stochastic mismatch negativity paradigm with high and low precision. We included inpatients with a schizophrenia spectrum disorder (N = 20), inpatients with a psychiatric disorder but without psychosis (N = 20), and healthy controls (N = 22), with comparable sex ratio and age distribution. Bayesian mapping and dynamic causal modelling were employed to investigate the underlying microcircuitry of precision encoding of auditory stimuli. Results: We found strong evidence (exceedance P > 0.99) for differences in the underlying connectivity associated with precision encoding between the three groups as well as on the continuum of psychotic-like experiences assessed across all participants. Critically, we show changes in interhemispheric connectivity between the two inpatient groups, with some connections further aligning on the continuum of psychotic-like experiences. Conclusions: While our results suggest continuity in backward connectivity alterations with psychotic-like experiences regardless of diagnosis, they also point to specificity for the schizophrenia spectrum disorder group in interhemispheric connectivity alterations.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)185-194
Number of pages9
JournalSchizophrenia Research
Issue number33
Publication statusPublished - 24 Aug 2020


  • Dynamic causal modelling
  • EEG
  • MMN
  • Posterior probability maps
  • Psychosis
  • Schizophrenia
  • Schizotypy

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