Neuroimaging studies have reliably detected prefrontal cortical abnormalities in schizophrenia. In a recent study, we built on these correlative findings using interleaved transcranial magnetic stimulation and functional magnetic resonance imaging (TMS fMRI), a tool that enables simultaneous interrogation and imaging of discrete neural circuits and their connections. Compared to controls subjects with schizophrenia showed increased activation at the left dorsolateral prefrontal cortex stimulation site (BA9 and adjacent BA46) and decreased activation in contralateral right BA9 putatively indicative of impaired interhemispheric functional connectivity. In this minireview, we discuss the implications of these findings and offer recommendations for how future studies can build on our results to shed novel light on the pathophysiology of schizophrenia.
Ryan D. Webler, Ziad Nahas