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Defining the Brain Network Underlying Psychotic Symptoms in Early Schizophrenia and Bipolar Disorder

Psychotic symptoms are the hallmark of schizophrenia, but are also present in about 50% of patients with bipolar I disorder. Despite great advances in neuroimaging, the brain networks underlying these symptoms are largely unknown. Identification of the primary and secondary nodes in the brain underlying psychotic symptoms will have an immediate translational significance for diagnosis and treatment. Psychotic disorders, like schizophrenia, but also bipolar disorder and severe depression, are currently diagnosed through clinical interviewing, with no objective tests for corroboration. The availability of fMR and sMR based features that reflect the severity of psychotic symptoms in a particular patient, could be developed as a diagnostic biomarker. This study would be the first to examine the network underlying psychotic symptoms in early schizophrenia and bipolar I with a novel multimodal approach.

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