Neurophysiological Evidence for Disturbances of Conflict Processing in Patients With Schizophrenia.
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Deficits in cognition are a hallmark of schizophrenia. In the present study, the authors investigated the effects of schizophrenia on the neural correlates of conflict processing in a single-trial version of the Stroop task by using event-related brain potentials. Relative to matched controls, patients with schizophrenia showed increased Stroop interference in response time, but this effect was eliminated when the effect of response slowing was controlled. In controls, conflict processing was associated with a negative wave peaking between 400 and 500 ms (N450) and conflict sustained potential (SP) peaking between 600 and 800 ms after stimulus onset. In patients with schizophrenia, the amplitude of the N450 was significantly attenuated and the conflict SP was absent. These results provide evidence for the existence of altered neural processes associated with conflict processing that may be associated with dysfunction of the anterior cingulate and prefrontal cortex in patients with schizophrenia.
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