Background: Previous studies have demonstrated functional and structural temporal lobe abnormalities located close to the auditory cortical regions in schizophrenia. The goal of this study was to determine whether functional abnormalities exist in the cortical processing of musical sound in schizophrenia.Methods: Twelve schizophrenic patients and twelve age- and sex-matched healthy controls were recruited, and participants listened to a random sequence of two kinds of sonic entities, intervals (tritones and perfect fifths) and chords (atonal chords, diminished chords, and major triads), of varying degrees of complexity and consonance. The perception of musical sound was investigated by the auditory evoked potentials technique.Results: Our results showed that schizophrenic patients exhibited significant reductions in the amplitudes of the N1 and P2 components elicited by musical stimuli, to which consonant sounds contributed more significantly than dissonant sounds. Schizophrenic patients could not perceive the dissimilarity between interval and chord stimuli based on the evoked potentials responses as compared with the healthy controls.Conclusion: This study provided electrophysiological evidence of functional abnormalities in the cortical processing of sound complexity and music consonance in schizophrenia. The preliminary findings warrant further investigations for the underlying mechanisms.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Psychiatry and Mental health