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Developing psychosis and its risk States through the lens of schizotypy.
41 Suppl 2
Publication types: Journal ArticlePublication Status: ppublish
Starting from the early descriptions of Kraepelin and Bleuler, the construct of schizotypy was developed from observations of aberrations in nonpsychotic family members of schizophrenia patients. In contemporary diagnostic manuals, the positive symptoms of schizotypal personality disorder were included in the ultra high-risk (UHR) criteria 20 years ago, and nowadays are broadly employed in clinical early detection of psychosis. The schizotypy construct, now dissociated from strict familial risk, also informed research on the liability to develop any psychotic disorder, and in particular schizophrenia-spectrum disorders, even outside clinical settings. Against the historical background of schizotypy it is surprising that evidence from longitudinal studies linking schizotypy, UHR, and conversion to psychosis has only recently emerged; and it still remains unclear how schizotypy may be positioned in high-risk research. Following a comprehensive literature search, we review 18 prospective studies on 15 samples examining the evidence for a link between trait schizotypy and conversion to psychosis in 4 different types of samples: general population, clinical risk samples according to UHR and/or basic symptom criteria, genetic (familial) risk, and clinical samples at-risk for a nonpsychotic schizophrenia-spectrum diagnosis. These prospective studies underline the value of schizotypy in high-risk research, but also point to the lack of evidence needed to better define the position of the construct of schizotypy within a developmental psychopathology perspective of emerging psychosis and schizophrenia-spectrum disorders.
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