Abnormal cortisol profile during psychosocial stress among patients with schizophrenia in a Chinese population.
Li, Chiang-Shan R
Hong, L Elliot
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AbstractAccumulating evidence suggests that hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis dysfunction might play an important role in the pathophysiology of schizophrenia. The aim of this study was to explore the cortisol response to psychological stress in patients with schizophrenia. In this study, patients with schizophrenia (n = 104) and healthy volunteers (n = 59) were asked to complete psychological stress challenge tasks, which included the Paced Auditory Serial Addition Task and Mirror-Tracing Persistence Task, and pre- and post-task saliva samples were collected to measure cortisol levels. Emotions and psychopathology were assessed by the Positive and Negative Affect Schedule and Positive and Negative Syndrome Scale. The results showed (1) that the cortisol response and negative emotions in patients with schizophrenia differed significantly from those in healthy volunteers, (2) there were significant interactions between the sampling time and diagnosis for saliva cortisol levels, (3) there were significant interactions between the scoring time and diagnosis for the negative affect score of the PANAS, and (4) the changes in salivary cortisol levels and negative affect scores before and after the psychological stress challenge tasks were not correlated with clinical symptoms in patients with schizophrenia. These findings indicated an abnormal cortisol profile in patients with schizophrenia, which might be a biological characteristic of the disease.
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Identifier to cite or link to this itemhttp://hdl.handle.net/10713/20138
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