Arzy S, Mohr C, Molnar-Szakacs I, Blanke O
PLoS ONE 2011;6(1):e16154
A fundamental trait of the human self is its continuum experience of space and time. Perceptual aberrations of this spatial and temporal continuity is a major characteristic of schizophrenia spectrum disturbances--including schizophrenia, schizotypal personality disorder and schizotypy. We have previously found the classical Perceptual Aberration Scale (PAS) scores, related to body and space, to be positively correlated with both behavior and temporo-parietal activation in healthy participants performing a task involving self-projection in space. However, not much is known about the relationship between temporal perceptual aberration, behavior and brain activity. To this aim, we composed a temporal Perceptual Aberration Scale (tPAS) similar to the traditional PAS. Testing on 170 participants suggested similar performance for PAS and tPAS. We then correlated tPAS and PAS scores to participants' performance and neural activity in a task of self-projection in time. tPAS scores correlated positively with reaction times across task conditions, as did PAS scores. Evoked potential mapping and electrical neuroimaging showed self-projection in time to recruit a network of brain regions at the left anterior temporal cortex, right temporo-parietal junction, and occipito-temporal cortex, and duration of activation in this network positively correlated with tPAS and PAS scores. These data demonstrate that schizotypal perceptual aberrations of both time and space, as reflected by tPAS and PAS scores, are positively correlated with performance and brain activation during self-projection in time in healthy individuals along the schizophrenia spectrum.