Motor symptoms and schizophrenia

Walther, Sebastian; Strik, Werner (2012). Motor symptoms and schizophrenia. Neuropsychobiology, 66(2), pp. 77-92. Basel: Karger 10.1159/000339456

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Classical schizophrenia literature reports motor symptoms as characteristic of the disorder. After the introduction of neuroleptic drugs, the existence of genuine motor disorders was challenged. Renewed interest arose as symptoms were found in never-medicated patients. Reports focused on abnormal involuntary movements, parkinsonism, neurological soft signs, catatonia, negative symptoms, or psychomotor slowing. Since these syndromes refer to different concepts, however, the definitions are not congruent and the symptoms overlap. The prevalence rates of motor symptoms in schizophrenia are surprisingly high, and recent studies indicate a possible pathobiology. In particular, the development and maturation of the human motor system appears to be closely linked to the emergence of motor symptoms observed in schizophrenia. Post-mortem and neuroimaging results demonstrated aberrant structure and function of premotor and motor cortices, basal ganglia, thalamus, and the connecting white matter tracts. Animal models have focused on aberrant neurotransmission and genetic contributions. Findings of localized abnormal oligodendrocyte function and myelination point to the special role of the white matter in schizophrenia, and recent studies specifically found an association between motor abnormalities and white matter structure in schizophrenia. This review of the literature supports the idea that motor symptoms are closely related to the neurodevelopmental disturbances of schizophrenia and a distinct syndromal dimension with its own pathophysiology.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Further Contribution)


04 Faculty of Medicine > University Psychiatric Services > University Hospital of Psychiatry and Psychotherapy > Management

UniBE Contributor:

Walther, Sebastian and Strik, Werner








Factscience Import

Date Deposited:

04 Oct 2013 14:39

Last Modified:

19 Feb 2014 22:50

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URI: (FactScience: 223274)

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