Comparing the functional neuroanatomy of proactive and reactive control between patients with schizophrenia and healthy controls

Anita N. Kwashie, Yizhou Ma, Deanna M. Barch, Matthew Chafee, J. Daniel Ragland, Steven M. Silverstein, Cameron S. Carter, James M. Gold, Angus MacDonald

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Cognitive control deficits are associated with impaired executive functioning in schizophrenia. The Dual Mechanisms of Control framework suggests that proactive control requires sustained dorsolateral prefrontal activity, whereas reactive control marshals a larger network. However, primate studies suggest these processes are maintained by dual-encoding regions. To distinguish between these theories, we compared the distinctiveness of proactive and reactive control functional neuroanatomy. In a reanalysis of data from a previous study, 47 adults with schizophrenia and 56 controls completed the Dot Pattern Expectancy task during an fMRI scan examining proactive and reactive control in frontoparietal and medial temporal regions. Areas suggesting specialized control or between-group differences were tested for association with symptoms and task performance. Elastic net models additionally explored these areas’ predictive abilities regarding performance. Most regions were active in both reactive and proactive control. However, evidence of specialized proactive control was found in the left middle and superior frontal gyri. Control participants showed greater proactive control in the left middle and right inferior frontal gyri. Elastic net models moderately predicted task performance and implicated various frontal gyri regions in control participants, with additional involvement of anterior cingulate and posterior parietal regions for reactive control. Elastic nets for patient participants implicated the inferior and superior frontal gyri, and posterior parietal lobe. Specialized cognitive control was unassociated with either performance or schizophrenia symptomatology. Future work is needed to clarify the distinctiveness of proactive and reactive control, and its role in executive deficits in severe psychopathology.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalCognitive, Affective and Behavioral Neuroscience
StateAccepted/In press - 2022

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was supported by the National Institutes of Health (5R01MH084840 to D.M.B.; 5R01MH084826 to C.S.C.; 5R01MH084828 to S.M.S.; 5R01MH084821 to J.M.G.; 5R01MH084861 to A.W.M.).

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022, The Psychonomic Society, Inc.


  • Cognitive control
  • Dot pattern expectancy task
  • fMRI
  • Functional neuroanatomy
  • Psychosis
  • Schizophrenia

PubMed: MeSH publication types

  • Journal Article


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