Brain network informed subject community detection in early-onset schizophrenia

Sci Rep. 2014 Jul 3:4:5549. doi: 10.1038/srep05549.


Early-onset schizophrenia (EOS) offers a unique opportunity to study pathophysiological mechanisms and development of schizophrenia. Using 26 drug-naïve, first-episode EOS patients and 25 age- and gender-matched control subjects, we examined intrinsic connectivity network (ICN) deficits underlying EOS. Due to the emerging inconsistency between behavior-based psychiatric disease classification system and the underlying brain dysfunctions, we applied a fully data-driven approach to investigate whether the subjects can be grouped into highly homogeneous communities according to the characteristics of their ICNs. The resultant subject communities and the representative characteristics of ICNs were then associated with the clinical diagnosis and multivariate symptom patterns. A default mode ICN was statistically absent in EOS patients. Another frontotemporal ICN further distinguished EOS patients with predominantly negative symptoms. Connectivity patterns of this second network for the EOS patients with predominantly positive symptom were highly similar to typically developing controls. Our post-hoc functional connectivity modeling confirmed that connectivity strength in this frontotemporal circuit was significantly modulated by relative severity of positive and negative syndromes in EOS. This study presents a novel subtype discovery approach based on brain networks and proposes complex links between brain networks and symptom patterns in EOS.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Intramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Brain Mapping
  • Case-Control Studies
  • Child
  • Female
  • Frontal Lobe / physiopathology*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Multivariate Analysis
  • Nerve Net / physiopathology*
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Schizophrenia, Childhood / diagnosis
  • Schizophrenia, Childhood / physiopathology*
  • Temporal Lobe / physiopathology*