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Markers of neurodevelopmental impairments in early-onset psychosis

Authors Petruzzelli MG, Margari L, Craig F, Campa MG, Martinelli D, Pastore A, Simone M, Margari F

Received 3 March 2015

Accepted for publication 7 May 2015

Published 20 July 2015 Volume 2015:11 Pages 1793—1798


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 5

Editor who approved publication: Dr Roger Pinder

Maria Giuseppina Petruzzelli,1 Lucia Margari,1 Francesco Craig,1 Maria Gloria Campa,1 Domenico Martinelli,2 Adriana Pastore,3 Marta Simone,1 Francesco Margari3

1Child and Adolescence Neuropsychiatry Unit, Department of Basic Medical Sciences, Neuroscience and Sense Organs, University “Aldo Moro” of Bari, 2Department of Medical and Surgical Sciences; University of Foggia, Foggia, 3Psychiatry Unit, Department of Basic Medical Sciences, Neuroscience and Sense Organ, University “Aldo Moro” of Bari, Bari, Italy

Background: The aim of this study was to assess the association between the clinical and neurobiological markers of neurodevelopmental impairments and early-onset schizophrenia spectrum psychosis.
Methods: A sample of 36 patients with early-onset schizophrenia spectrum psychosis was compared to a control sample of 36 patients with migraine. We assessed early childhood neurodevelopmental milestones using a modified version of the General Developmental Scale, general intellectual ability using the Wechsler Intelligence Scale for Children–Revised or Leiter International Performance Scale–Revised for patients with speech and language abnormalities, and neurological soft signs with specific regard to subtle motor impairment.
Results: Subjects with early-onset psychosis had a higher rate of impaired social development (P=0.001), learning difficulties (P=0.04), enuresis (P=0.0008), a lower intelligence quotient (P<0.001), and subtle motor impairments (P=0.005) than control subjects.
Conclusion: We suggest that neurodevelopment in early-onset psychosis is characterized by a global impairment of functional and adaptive skills that manifests from early childhood, rather than a delay or limitation in language and motor development. The current evidence is based on a small sample and should be investigated in larger samples in future research.

Keywords: early-onset psychosis, early-onset schizophrenia, neurodevelopment, social cognition, intellectual disabilities

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