Laura F. Martin

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CONTEXT The alpha7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor gene, CHRNA7, is associated with genetic transmission of schizophrenia and related cognitive and neurophysiological sensory gating deficits. Cognitive dysfunction is responsible for significant psychosocial disability in schizophrenia. Nicotine, a low-potency agonist at the alpha7 receptor, has some(More)
Several lines of evidence suggest a pathophysiological role for nicotinic receptors in schizophrenia. Activation by nicotine alters physiological dysfunctions, such as eye movement and sensory gating abnormalities, but effects on neuropsychological performance are just beginning to be investigated. Nicotine-induced desensitization and the well-known(More)
Auditory sensory gating, a biological measurement of the ability to suppress the evoked response to the second of two auditory stimuli, is diminished in people with schizophrenia. Deficits in sensory gating are associated with attentional impairment, and may contribute to cognitive symptoms and perceptual disturbances. This inhibitory process, which(More)
OBJECTIVE Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors are possible therapeutic targets for schizophrenia, as shown by neurobiological and molecular evidence for deficiencies in expression of alpha(7)-nicotinic receptors. Patients' heavy smoking suggests attempted self-medication through this mechanism. The agent 3-(2,4-dimethoxybenzylidene) anabaseine (DMXB-A) is a(More)
In addition to the devastating symptoms of psychosis, many people with schizophrenia also suffer from cognitive impairment. These cognitive symptoms lead to marked dysfunction and can impact employability, treatment adherence, and social skills. Deficits in P50 auditory gating are associated with attentional impairment and may contribute to cognitive(More)
The default mode network (DMN), one of several resting-state networks (RSN) in the brain, is thought to be involved in self-referential thought, awareness, and episodic memories. Nicotine improves cognitive performance, in part by improving attention. Nicotinic agonists have been shown to decrease activity in regions within DMN and increase activity in(More)
INTRODUCTION Cholinergic agonists and, more specifically, nicotine, have been found to enhance a number of cognitive processes. The effect of nicotine on temporal processing is not known. The use of behavioral measures of temporal processing to measure its effect could be confounded by the general effects of nicotine on attention. Mismatch negativity (MMN)(More)
BACKGROUND Abnormal smooth pursuit eye movement (SPEM) in schizophrenic patients is a well known phenomenon, but the neurophysiological mechanisms underlying the deficit are unknown. Nicotine temporarily improves SPEM and has been associated with reduced hippocampal hemodynamic activity in schizophrenics. Nicotine's effect on brain activity in control(More)
Despite the use of cholinergic therapies in Alzheimer's disease and the development of cholinergic strategies for schizophrenia, relatively little is known about how the system modulates the connectivity and structure of large-scale brain networks. To better understand how nicotinic cholinergic systems alter these networks, this study examined the effects(More)
OBJECTIVES Single nucleotide allelic variants in the promoter region of the chromosome 15 alpha-7 acetylcholine nicotinic receptor gene (CHRNA7) are associated with both schizophrenia and the P50 auditory evoked potential sensory gating deficit. The purpose of this study was to determine if CHRNA7 promoter allelic variants are also associated with abnormal(More)