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Long-range endophenotype forecasting of schizophrenia spectrum symptoms: Neurocognitive and psychophysiological predictors
Although experimental psychopathology studies of schizotypy have established clear-cut consistencies with similar studies of clinical schizophrenia in terms of multiple neurocognitive or psychophysiological constructs, prospective prediction of schizophrenia spectrum features using such constructs remains essentially absent from the empirical corpus. For example, deficits in sustained attention, smooth pursuit eye movements, and executive functioning are found among schizotypes. Such deviance documents the connection between schizotypic states and schizophrenia and thereby supports the general schizotypy model. The missing piece of the schizotypy prediction puzzle has been the empirical evaluation of such deficits as predictors of later psychotic phenomenology. In short, do laboratory measures conjectured to tap schizophrenia-relevant liability indicators predict psychotic features later in the life-course among those thought to be at risk, but were demonstrably non-psychotic at baseline measurement? In this report, I present data from a 17-year follow-up study with a focus on the relations between initial assessments of multiple schizophrenia-related endophenotypes and psychotic features assessed in mid-life. The results are presented and discussed both in terms of the validation of the high-risk/endophenotype prediction model as well as the implications the findings might have for other related efforts, such as the study of putative prodromal schizophrenia.