Lower pre-pulse inhibition in children with the 22q11 deletion syndrome
Objective: The 22q11 deletion syndrome
is associated with a range of possible physical
anomalies, probable ongoing learning
disabilities, and a specific constellation of
neuropsychological deficits, including impairments
in selective and executive visual
attention, working memory, and sensorimotor
functioning. It has been estimated
that 25% of the children with 22q11 deletion
syndrome go on to develop schizophrenia
in late adolescence or adulthood.
This is of urgent concern. Specification of
early brain network vulnerabilities may
provide a basis for early intervention while
indicating critical links between genes and
severe psychiatric illness. Neuropsychological
studies of children with 22q11 deletion
syndrome have implicated an array of
potentially aberrant brain pathways. This
study was conducted to determine whether
preattentive processing (“sensorimotor gating”)
deficits are present in this population.
Method: The authors administered a test
of prepulse inhibition to 25 children with
22q11 deletion syndrome and their 23
sibling comparison subjects, ages 6–13. It
was predicted that the children with
22q11 deletion syndrome would have
lower prepulse inhibition than the comparison
Results: Prepulse inhibition in the children
with 22q11 deletion syndrome
(26.06%) was significantly less than that of
the sibling comparison subjects (46.41%).
Secondary analyses suggested that this
decrement did not reflect developmental
delay, and lower prepulse inhibition was
associated with particular subsyndromal
symptoms in some children.
Conclusions: Sensorimotor gating is
lower in children with 22q11 deletion
syndrome. These findings may indicate
specific brain circuits that are anomalous
in 22q11 deletion syndrome.
Christina Sobin, Karen Kiley-Brabeck, and Maria Karayiorgou. "Lower pre-pulse inhibition in children with the 22q11 deletion syndrome" American Journal of Psychiatry (2005).
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/christina_sobin/10
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