Brain volumes as predictor of outcome in recent-onset schizophrenia: a multi-center MRI study

N.E.M. van Haren, W. Cahn, H.E. Hulshoff Pol, H.G. Schnack, E. Caspers, A. Lemstra, M.M. Sitskoorn, D. Wiersma, R.J. van den Bosch, P.M.A.J. Dingemans, A.H. Schene, R.S. Kahn

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Gray matter brain volume decreases have been found in patients with schizophrenia as compared to healthy control subjects measured by using Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI). An association has been suggested between decreased gray matter volume and poor outcome in chronically ill patients with schizophrenia. The present longitudinal multi-center study investigated whether gray matter volume at illness onset can predict poor outcome in recent-onset schizophrenia after a follow-up of approximately 2 years. An MRI calibration study was performed since scans of patients with recent-onset psychosis were conducted at three sites with 1.5 T MR scanners from two different manufacturers. Applying a linear scaling procedure on the histogram improved comparability between volume measurements acquired from images from the different scanners. Brain scans were obtained from 109 patients with recent-onset schizophrenia. Volumes of intracranium, total brain, cerebral gray and white matter, third and lateral ventricles, and cerebellum were measured. After a mean follow-up period of approximately 2 years, measurements of symptoms, functioning, need for care, and illness history variables were assessed. No significant correlations were found between the brain volume measures and any of these measures. Gray matter volume at illness onset does not predict outcome after 2 years in recent-onset schizophrenia.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)41-52
Number of pages12
JournalSchizophrenia Research
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Nov 2003


  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Brain
  • Brain Mapping
  • Calibration
  • Cerebellum
  • Cerebral Cortex
  • Cerebral Ventricles
  • Dominance, Cerebral
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Image Interpretation, Computer-Assisted
  • Longitudinal Studies
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging
  • Male
  • Mathematical Computing
  • Netherlands
  • Neuropsychological Tests
  • Phantoms, Imaging
  • Psychometrics
  • Reference Values
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Schizophrenia
  • Schizophrenic Psychology
  • Journal Article
  • Multicenter Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't


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