Cerebellar correlates of social dysfunction among individuals at clinical high risk for psychosis

Isabelle R. Frosch*, Katherine S.F. Damme, Jessica A. Bernard, Vijay A. Mittal

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Introduction: Social deficits are a significant feature among both individuals with psychosis and those at clinical high-risk (CHR) for developing psychosis. Critically, the psychosis risk syndrome emerges in adolescence and young adulthood, when social skill development is being fine-tuned. Yet, the underlying pathophysiology of social deficits in individuals at CHR for psychosis remains unclear. Literature suggests the cerebellum plays a critical role in social functioning. Cerebellar dysfunction in psychosis and CHR individuals is well-established, yet limited research has examined links between the cerebellum and social functioning deficits in this critical population. Method: In the current study, 68 individuals at CHR for developing psychosis and 66 healthy controls (HCs) completed social processing measures (examining social interaction, social cognition, and global social functioning) and resting-state MRI scans. Seed-to-voxel resting-state connectivity analyses were employed to examine the relationship between social deficits and lobular cerebellar network connectivity. Results: Analyses indicated that within the CHR group, each social domain variable was linked to reduced connectivity between social cerebellar subregions (e.g., Crus II, lobules VIIIa and VIIIb) and cortical regions (e.g., frontal pole and frontal gyrus), but a control cerebellar subregion (e.g., lobule X) and was unrelated to these social variables. Discussion: These results indicate an association between several cerebellar lobules and specific deficits in social processing. The cerebellum, therefore, may be particularly salient to the social domain and future research is need to examine the role of the cerebellum in psychosis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number1027470
JournalFrontiers in Psychiatry
StatePublished - Dec 1 2022


  • cerebellum
  • clinical high risk (CHR) for psychosis
  • prodrome
  • resting state
  • social functioning

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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