Preprint Review Version 1 Preserved in Portico This version is not peer-reviewed

Recent Developments in Treating Cognitive Impairment Associated with Schizophrenia

Version 1 : Received: 10 May 2021 / Approved: 12 May 2021 / Online: 12 May 2021 (07:26:36 CEST)

How to cite: Bittner, R.A.; Barnes-Scheufler, C.V.; Hettwer, M.D.; Reif, A.; Qubad, M. Recent Developments in Treating Cognitive Impairment Associated with Schizophrenia. Preprints 2021, 2021050257 (doi: 10.20944/preprints202105.0257.v1). Bittner, R.A.; Barnes-Scheufler, C.V.; Hettwer, M.D.; Reif, A.; Qubad, M. Recent Developments in Treating Cognitive Impairment Associated with Schizophrenia. Preprints 2021, 2021050257 (doi: 10.20944/preprints202105.0257.v1).

Abstract

Pervasive and wide-ranging cognitive deficits are a core feature of schizophrenia and an important determinant of long-term functional outcome. The lack of sufficiently effective treatments for cognitive impairment associated with schizophrenia (CIAS) represents a major unmet need and a central roadblock towards recovery. This is partly due to the current therapeutic focus on clinical symptoms, and the relative neglect of cognitive impairments despite their functionally disabling effects. Furthermore, effective treatment is impeded by our limited knowledge of the complex pathophysiology, which gives rise to perturbed information processing. Here, we review mechanisms and effectiveness of available pharmacological and non-pharmacological treatments for CIAS. Current evidence indicates, that while techniques which broadly enhance neural plasticity show the greatest therapeutic potential, effect sizes are at best moderate. Among other reasons, this is due to a considerable heterogeneity of responses to individual interventions. Furthermore, we discuss how recent conceptual advances in operationalizing cognitive impairments based on cognitive neuroscience have the potential to address these issues and facilitate the development of novel treatment strategies for CIAS. This includes more clearly elucidating pathophysiological mechanisms in both humans and animal models, identifying new treatment targets as well as establishing biomarkers for a better prediction of treatment responses.

Subject Areas

Schizophrenia, cognitive dysfunction, neural plasticity, inflammation, cognitive biomarker, pharmacological treatment, cognitive remediation, aerobic exercise, brain stimulation

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