Bridging the gap between genes and language deficits in schizophrenia: an oscillopathic approach [article]

Elliot Murphy, Antonio Benitez-Burraco
2016 bioRxiv   pre-print
Schizophrenia is characterised by marked language deficits, but it is not clear how these deficits arise from gene mutations linked to or associated with the disease. The goal of this paper is to aid the bridging of the gap between genes and schizophrenia and, ultimately, give support to the view that it represents an abnormal ontogenetic itinerary for the human faculty of language, heavily rooted in the evolutionary processes that brought about modern language. To that end we will focus on how
more » ... e will focus on how the schizophrenia brain processes language and, particularly, on its distinctive oscillatory profile during language processing: We will argue that brain rhythms constitute the best route to interpret language deficits in this condition and map them to neural dysfunction and risk alleles of the genes. Additionally, we will show that candidate genes for schizophrenia are overrepresented among the set of genes that are believed are important for the evolution of human language. These genes crucially include (and are related to) genes involved in brain rhythmicity. We will claim that this translational effort and the links we uncover may help develop an understanding of language evolution, along with the aetiology of schizophrenia, its clinical/linguistic profile, and its high prevalence among modern populations.
doi:10.1101/043547 fatcat:qnl4tav2ajfxbcdckjcmrlmjue