Longitudinal Assessment and Functional Neuroimaging of Movement Variability Reveal Novel Insights Into Motor Dysfunction in Clinical High Risk for Psychosis. Academic Article uri icon


  • Motor dysfunction in youth at clinical high risk (CHR) for psychosis is thought to reflect abnormal neurodevelopment within cortical-subcortical motor circuits and may be important for understanding clinical trajectories of CHR individuals. However, to date, our perspective of brain-behavior relationships has been informed solely by cross-sectional correlational studies linking behavior in the lab to brain structure or respective resting-state network connectivity. Here, we assess movement dysfunction from 2 perspectives: study 1 investigates the longitudinal progression of handwriting variability and positive symptoms in a sample of 91 CHR and healthy controls during a 12-month follow-up and study 2 involves a multiband functional magnetic resonance imaging task exploring the relationship between power grip force stability and motor network brain activation in a subset of participants. In study 1, we found that greater handwriting variability was a stable feature of CHR participants who experienced worse symptom progression. Study 2 results showed that CHR individuals had greater variability in their grip force and greater variability was related to decreased activation in the associative cortico-striatal network compared to controls. Motor variability may be a stable marker of vulnerability for psychosis risk and possible indicator of a vulnerable cortico-striatal brain network functioning in CHR participants, although the effects of antipsychotic medication should be considered.

published proceedings

  • Schizophr Bull

altmetric score

  • 3.95

author list (cited authors)

  • Dean, D. J., Bernard, J. A., Damme, K., O'Reilly, R., Orr, J. M., & Mittal, V. A.

citation count

  • 5

complete list of authors

  • Dean, Derek J||Bernard, Jessica A||Damme, Katherine SF||O'Reilly, Randall||Orr, Joseph M||Mittal, Vijay A

publication date

  • December 2020