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Comprehension of embedded clauses in schizophrenia with and without formal thought disorder

Cokal, D; Zimmerer, V; Varley, R; Watson, S; Hinzen, W; (2019) Comprehension of embedded clauses in schizophrenia with and without formal thought disorder. The Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease , 207 (5) pp. 384-392. 10.1097/NMD.0000000000000981. Green open access

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Abstract

Formal thought disorder (FTD) in schizophrenia (SZ) is clinically manifest primarily through language production, where linguistic studies have reported numerous anomalies including lesser use of embedded clauses. Here we explored whether problems of language may extend to comprehension and clause embedding in particular. A sentence-picture matching task was designed with two conditions in which embedded clauses were either presupposed as true (factive) or not. Performance across these two conditions was compared in people with SZ and moderate-to-severe FTD (SZ+FTD), SZ with minimal FTD (SZ-FTD), first degree relatives of people with SZ, and neurotypical controls. The SZ+FTD group performed significantly worse than all others in both conditions, and worse in the non-factive than the factive one. These results demonstrate language dysfunction in comprehension specific to FTD in a critical aspect of grammatical complexity and its associated meaning, which has been independently known to be cognitively significant as well.

Type: Article
Title: Comprehension of embedded clauses in schizophrenia with and without formal thought disorder
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1097/NMD.0000000000000981
Publisher version: http://doi.org/10.1097/NMD.0000000000000981
Language: English
Additional information: This version is the author accepted manuscript. For information on re-use, please refer to the publisher’s terms and conditions.
Keywords: Schizophrenia, Formal Thought Disorder, Comprehension, Syntax, Language dysfunction
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > Div of Psychology and Lang Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > Div of Psychology and Lang Sciences > Language and Cognition
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10067814
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