Bergamot Polyphenolic Fraction Supplementation Improves Cognitive Functioning in Schizophrenia: Data From an 8-Week, Open-Label Pilot Study

J Clin Psychopharmacol. 2017 Aug;37(4):468-471. doi: 10.1097/JCP.0000000000000730.

Abstract

Background: Novel treatment strategies for cognitive dysfunctions may prevent long-term disability in patients with schizophrenia, and polyphenolic compounds might be a promising strategy. Bergamot (Citrus bergamia), a citrus fruit characterized by a high amount of flavonoids and flavonoid glycosides, may represent a potential nutraceutical approach to cognitive dysfunction. The present study was aimed to explore the efficacy of bergamot polyphenolic fraction (BPF) supplementation on cognitive/executive functioning in a sample of patients with schizophrenia receiving second-generation antipsychotics.

Methods: Twenty outpatients treated with second-generation antipsychotics assumed BPF at an oral daily dose of 1000 mg/d for 8 weeks. Brief Psychiatric Rating Scale, Wisconsin Card Sorting Test (WCST), Verbal Fluency Task-Controlled Oral Word Association Test, and Stroop Color-Word Test were administered.

Results: At end point, (week 8) BPF supplementation significantly improved WCST "perseverative errors" (P = 0.004) and semantic fluency test (P = 0.004). Moreover, a trend for other cognitive variable (WCST "categories," phonemic fluency, and Stroop Color-Word Test) improvement was observed.

Conclusions: The findings provide evidence that BPF administration may be proposed as a potential supplementation strategy to improve cognitive outcome in schizophrenia. Further clinical trials with adequately powered and well-designed methodology are needed to better explore the BPF effectiveness on cognitive impairments in patients with schizophrenia.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial

MeSH terms

  • Administration, Oral
  • Adult
  • Antipsychotic Agents / administration & dosage*
  • Cognition / drug effects*
  • Cognition / physiology
  • Drug Therapy, Combination
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Pilot Projects
  • Plant Oils / administration & dosage*
  • Polyphenols / administration & dosage*
  • Schizophrenia / diagnosis*
  • Schizophrenia / drug therapy*
  • Time Factors
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Young Adult

Substances

  • Antipsychotic Agents
  • Plant Oils
  • Polyphenols
  • bergamot oil