Attentional Modulation of Source Attribution in First-Episode Psychosis: A Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging Study

Lana M. Kambeitz-Ilankovic, Kristina Hennig-Fast, Stefania Benetti, Joseph Kambeitz, William Petterson-Yeo, Owen O'Daly, Philip McGuire, Paul Allen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Background: In patients with schizophrenia, the misattribution of self-generated events to an external source is associated with the presence of psychotic symptoms. The aim of this study was to investigate how this misattribution is influenced by dysfunction of attentional processing, which is also impaired in schizophrenia. Methods: Participants underwent functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI) while listening to prerecorded speech. Their expectancies were manipulated using visual cues that were either congruent (valid) or incongruent (invalid) with the speech. The source (self/other) and the acoustic quality (undistorted/distorted) of the speech were also manipulated. Twenty patients with first-episode psychosis (FEP) and 20 matched healthy controls (HC) were tested. Results: When listening to self-generated speech preceded by an invalid (other speech) cue, relative to HC, FEP patients showed a trend to misidentify their own speech as that of another person. Analysis of fMRI data showed that FEP patients had reduced activation in the right middle temporal gyrus (MTG) and left precuneus (Pc) relative to HC. Within the FEP group, the level of activation in the right MTG was negatively correlated with the severity of their positive psychotic symptoms. Conclusions: Impaired attentional modulation in schizophrenia may contribute to the tendency for FEP patients to misattribute the source of self-generated material, and this may be mediated by the right MTG and Pc, regions that are involved in both self-referential processing and the integration of sensory information.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1027-1036
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 2013

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