Cross-diagnostic comparison of duration mismatch negativity and P3a in bipolar disorder and schizophrenia

Carol Jahshan, Jonathan K. Wynn, Kristopher I. Mathis, Lori L. Altshuler, David C. Glahn, Michael F. Green

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

68 Scopus citations


Objectives: Bipolar disorder and schizophrenia share common pathophysiological processes and may have similar perceptual abnormalities. Mismatch negativity (MMN) and P3a - event-related potentials associated with auditory preattentional processing - have been extensively studied in schizophrenia, but rarely in bipolar disorder. Furthermore, MMN and P3a have not been examined between diagnostic subgroups of patients with bipolar disorder. We evaluated MMN and P3a in patients with bipolar disorder compared to patients with schizophrenia and healthy controls. Methods: MMN and P3a were assessed in 52 bipolar disorder patients, 30 schizophrenia patients, and 27 healthy control subjects during a duration-deviant auditory oddball paradigm. Results: Significant MMN and P3a amplitude reductions were present in patients with bipolar disorder and schizophrenia relative to controls. The MMN reduction was more prominent in patients with schizophrenia than bipolar disorder, at a trend level. P3a did not differ significantly between patient groups. There were no MMN or P3a differences between patients with bipolar I (n=34) and bipolar II (n=18) disorder. Patients with bipolar I disorder failed to show lateralized MMN, in contrast to the other groups. No MMN or P3a differences were found between patients with bipolar disorder taking (n=12) and not taking (n=40) lithium, as well as between those taking (n=30) and not taking (n=22) antipsychotic medications. Conclusions: Patients with bipolar disorder showed deficits in preattentive auditory processing, including MMN deficits that are less severe and P3a deficits that are slightly more pronounced, than those seen in schizophrenia.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)239-248
Number of pages10
JournalBipolar Disorders
Issue number3
StatePublished - May 2012
Externally publishedYes


  • Auditory processing
  • Bipolar disorder
  • Mismatch negativity
  • P3a
  • Schizophrenia


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