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Schizophrenia patients' ability to monitor reality may be helped by computerized training
Date:2/29/2012

o them ("chicken-road").

Compared to their pre-training assessments, people who had received the computerized cognitive training were better able to distinguish between the words they had made up themselves and those that had been presented to them. Furthermore, analyses of the MRI data revealed they also had increased activity in the part of the brain (the medial prefrontal cortex) that governs these decisions.

"Interestingly, greater activation within the medial prefrontal cortex was also linked with better social functioning six months after training," Subramaniam said. "In contrast, patients in the computer games control condition did not show any improvements, demonstrating that the behavioral and neural changes were specific to the computerized training patient group."

What this suggests, said Vinogradov, is that "the neural impairments in schizophrenia are not immutably fixed but may be amenable to well-designed interventions that target restoration of neural system functioning."

The study "sets the groundwork for what could be a new treatment approach in psychiatric illness a new tool we could use in addition to medication, psychotherapeutic approaches or cognitive behavioral approaches," she said.


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Contact: Jason Socrates Bardi
jason.bardi@ucsf.edu
415-502-6397
University of California - San Francisco
Source:Eurekalert  

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