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2022 NeuroImage-Clinical
Processing of linguistic deixis in people with schizophrenia, with and without auditory verbal hallucinations.
Fuentes-Claramonte P, Soler-Vidal J, Salgado-Pineda P, Ramiro N, Garcia-Leon MA, Cano R, Arévalo A, Munuera J, Portillo F, Panicali F, Sarró S, Pomarol-Clotet E, McKenna P, Hinzen W

Servei limitat a col·laboradors/res de la xarxa de centres de Germanes Hospitalàries. Rebreu un missatge al vostre correu-e amb un enllaç per a la descàrrega del present article.


Auditory verbal hallucinations (AVH) are a key symptom of schizophrenia (SZ) defined by anomalous perception of speech. Anomalies of processing external speech stimuli have also been reported in people with AVH, but it is unexplored which specific dimensions of language are processed differently. Using a speech perception task (passive listening), we here targeted the processing of deixis, a key dimension of language governing the contextual anchoring of speech in interpersonal context. We designed naturalistic speech stimuli that were either non-personal and fact-reporting ('low-deixis' condition), or else involved rich deictic devices such as the grammatical first and second persons, direct questions, and vocatives ('high-deixis'). We asked whether neural correlates of deixis obtained with fMRI would distinguish patients with and without frequent hallucinations (AVHÂ +Â vs AVH-) from controls and each other. Results showed that high-deixis relative to low-deixis was associated with clusters of increased activation in the bilateral middle temporal gyri extending into the temporal poles and the inferior parietal cortex, in all groups. The AVHÂ +Â and AVH- groups did not differ. When unifying them, the SZ group as a whole showed altered activity in the precuneus, midline regions and inferior parietal cortex. These results fail to confirm deictic processing anomalies specific to patients with AVH, but reveal such anomalies across SZ. Hypoactivation of this network may relate to a cognitive mechanism for attributing and anchoring thought and referential speech content in context.
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