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April 1995

Neural Circuitry of the Prefrontal Cortex in Schizophrenia

Author Affiliations

Western Psychiatric Institute and Clinic Departments of Psychiatry and Neuroscience University of Pittsburgh 3811 O'Hara St Biomedical Science Tower W1651 Pittsburgh, PA 15213-2593

Arch Gen Psychiatry. 1995;52(4):269-273. doi:10.1001/archpsyc.1995.03950160019004

The FINDINGS of an increasing number and variety of studies have implicated the prefrontal cortex (PFC), especially the dorsolateral region, as a site of dysfunction in schizophrenia. For example, schizophrenic patients perform poorly on cognitive tasks that are subserved by neural systems involving PFC circuitry.1,2 In addition, functional imaging studies have demonstrated reduced blood flow or metabolic activity in this region of the cerebral cortex in many schizophrenic patients.3-7

See also pages 258, 267, and 274  However, despite the accumulating evidence of PFC dysfunction in schizophrenia, major challenges for research in this area continue to include (1) the identification of specific alterations of PFC circuitry in schizophrenia and (2) the development of a rational pathophysiological accounting, based on our current understanding of the structure and operation of cortical neural systems, for the relation between altered PFC circuitry and disturbed PFC function in schizophrenia.Although relegated to the graveyard