The aim of the present study was to characterize the neural network reorganization during a cognitive task in schizophrenia (SCH) by means of wavelet entropy (WE). Previous studies suggest that the cognitive impairment in patients with SCH could be related to the disrupted integrative functions of neural circuits. Nevertheless, further characterization of this effect is needed, especially in the time-frequency domain. This characterization is sensitive to fast neuronal dynamics and their synchronization that may be an important component of distributed neuronal interactions; especially in light of the disconnection hypothesis for SCH and its electrophysiological correlates. In this work, the irregularity dynamics elicited by an auditory oddball paradigm were analyzed through synchronized-averaging (SA) and single-trial (ST) analyses. They provide complementary information on the spatial patterns involved in the neural network reorganization. Our results from 20 healthy controls and 20 SCH patients showed a WE decrease from baseline to response both in controls and SCH subjects. These changes were significantly more pronounced for healthy controls after ST analysis, mainly in central and frontopolar areas. On the other hand, SA analysis showed more widespread spatial differences than ST results. These findings suggest that the activation response is weakly phase-locked to stimulus onset in SCH and related to the default mode and salience networks. Furthermore, the less pronounced changes in WE from baseline to response for SCH patients suggest an impaired ability to reorganize neural dynamics during an oddball task.
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