Shape and size of the corpus callosum in schizophrenia and schizotypal personality disorder

Schizophr Res. 2000 May 5;42(3):193-208. doi: 10.1016/s0920-9964(99)00123-1.


The size and shape of the corpus callosum were assessed on sagittal section magnetic resonance images in 27 patients with schizophrenia, 13 patients with schizotypal personality disorder (SPD), and 30 healthy volunteers. High-resolution 1.2mm axial SPGR images were acquired and resectioned so that the sagittal plane passed through the anterior and posterior commissures and was parallel to the interhemispheric fissure. The corpus callosum and the whole brain were traced on midsagittal section slices of each brain, and the callosum was divided into 30 anteroposterior sectors. Pixel-by-pixel chi-square and thin-plate spline analyses were used to assess between-group shape differences. Size of the corpus callosum was smaller anteriorly in the genu of the corpus callosum and posteriorly in the splenium in schizophrenic patients than in normal controls. The genu of the corpus callosum was larger in SPD patients than in schizophrenic patients or normal controls. The posterior corpus callosum was largest in normal controls, smaller in SPD patients, and smallest in schizophrenic patients. Shape analysis was consistent with these size comparisons, and suggested a downward bowing of the corpus callosum in schizophrenic and SPD patients. SPD patients also had a region of the callosum just posterior to the genu that was narrower than in the other two groups. The decreases in corpus callosal size in schizophrenia varied directly with length of illness, perhaps indicative of a progressive process. The patient-control differences in callosal size and shape are consistent with a hypothesis of decreased connectivity between the left and the right hemispheres in schizophrenia and SPD.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Brief Psychiatric Rating Scale
  • Cognition Disorders / complications
  • Cognition Disorders / diagnosis
  • Corpus Callosum / anatomy & histology*
  • Female
  • Frontal Lobe / physiopathology
  • Functional Laterality / physiology
  • Humans
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging
  • Male
  • Schizophrenia / complications
  • Schizophrenia / diagnosis*
  • Schizophrenia / physiopathology
  • Schizotypal Personality Disorder / complications
  • Schizotypal Personality Disorder / diagnosis*
  • Severity of Illness Index