The challenge in understanding cognitive impairment in schizophrenia is that people with this illness have deficits in an array of domains. Here, we briefly review evidence regarding the pattern of deficits within three domains: context processing, working memory and episodic memory. We suggest that there may be a common mechanism driving deficits in these domains - an impairment in the ability to actively represent goal information in working memory to guide behavior, a function we refer to as proactive control. We suggest that such deficits in proactive control reflect impairments in dorsolateral prefrontal cortex, its interactions with other brain regions, such as parietal cortex, thalamus and striatum, and the influence of neurotransmitter systems, such as dopamine, GABA and glutamate.
Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.