Abnormal auditory-evoked gamma band oscillations in first-episode schizophrenia during both eye open and eye close states

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Abnormal auditory steady state response (ASSR) is a typical finding among schizophrenia patients, which is thought to directly reflect deficient gamma band oscillations in the brain. However, whether these ASSR alterations are state dependent, e.g. during eye-open or eye-closed conditions, has not yet been carefully elucidated in schizophrenia. Our study aimed to explore whether the abnormality of ASSR in patients with first-episode schizophrenia (FEP) is altered under eye-open (EO) and eye-closed (EC) states. ASSR was elicited using 40 Hz click trains under EO and EC states. Twenty-eight healthy control subjects (HC) and thirty-three FEP individuals, 17 of whom were medication-naïve, were recruited. The event-related spectrum perturbation (ERSP) and intertrial coherence (ITC) in response to 40 Hz click sounds were quantified. Compared to HC group, FEP group showed a lower ITC and ERSP during EO state, as well as a decreased ITC during EC state. Our results suggest that abnormalities in gamma band oscillations among first-episode schizophrenia patients are present under both eye open and eye close states. Although differences in gamma band oscillations between EO and EC states within the FEP group were not observed, exploratory results suggest that state-sensitivity may be contingent on medication use.

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