Maintenance and manipulation of information in schizophrenia: Further evidence for impairment in the central executive component of working memory

Junghoon Kim, David C. Glahn, Keith H. Nuechterlein, Tyrone D. Cannon

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

86 Scopus citations

Abstract

Impairments in working memory (WM) have been proposed to underlie various cognitive and functional impairments in schizophrenia. However, the nature and extent of the dysfunction remain unclear. The present study attempted to examine the integrity of sub-components of working memory in schizophrenia within the framework of the multiple-component working memory model proposed by Baddeley. Two sets of visuospatial and verbal delayed-response tasks were developed which had comparable formats and difficulties across domains. In Experiment 1, demands on the central executive (CE) were manipulated by requiring subjects either (1) to simultaneously maintain and transform information (maintenance-and- manipulation condition) or (2) just to maintain this information (maintenance-only condition). In Experiment 2, the amount of information to be maintained over the delay was parametrically varied to evaluate demands on the temporary maintenance component of working memory. Patients (N=16) performed worse than controls (N=16) in both conditions of Experiment 1; however, simultaneous maintenance and manipulation was associated with a significantly greater performance reduction in the patients. In Experiment 2, both patients (N=15) and controls (N=15) declined in performance, at equivalent rates, with increasing memory load. Parallel findings were observed for the verbal and visuospatial tasks. These results suggest that while both maintenance and central executive aspects of working memory are impaired in schizophrenic patients, the central executive may be more severely affected.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)173-187
Number of pages15
JournalSchizophrenia research
Volume68
Issue number2-3
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 1 2004
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Central executive
  • Maintenance
  • Manipulation
  • Prefrontal cortex
  • Schizophrenia
  • Working memory

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Biological Psychiatry

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