The impact of aerobic exercise on brain-derived neurotrophic factor and neurocognition in individuals with schizophrenia: A single-blind, randomized clinical trial

David Kimhy, Julia Vakhrusheva, Matthew N. Bartels, Hilary F. Armstrong, Jacob S. Ballon, Samira Khan, Rachel W. Chang, Marie C. Hansen, Lindsey Ayanruoh, Amanda Lister, Eero Castrén, Edward E. Smith, Richard P. Sloan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

86 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Individuals with schizophrenia display substantial neurocognitive deficits for which available treatments offer only limited benefits. Yet, findings from studies of animals, clinical and nonclinical populations have linked neurocognitive improvements to increases in aerobic fitness (AF) via aerobic exercise training (AE). Such improvements have been attributed to up-regulation of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF). However, the impact of AE on neurocognition, and the putative role of BDNF, have not been investigated in schizophrenia. Employing a proof-of-concept, single-blind, randomized clinical trial design, 33 individuals with schizophrenia were randomized to receive standard psychiatric treatment (n = 17; "treatment as usual"; TAU) or attend a 12-week AE program (n = 16) utilizing active-play video games (Xbox 360 Kinect) and traditional AE equipment. Participants completed assessments of AF (indexed by VO<inf>2</inf> peak ml/kg/min), neurocognition (MATRICS Consensus Cognitive Battery), and serum-BDNF before and after and 12-week period. Twenty-six participants (79%) completed the study. At follow-up, the AE participants improved their AF by 18.0% vs a -0.5% decline in the TAU group (P =. 002) and improved their neurocognition by 15.1% vs -2.0% decline in the TAU group (P =. 031). Hierarchical multiple regression analyses indicated that enhancement in AF and increases in BDNF predicted 25.4% and 14.6% of the neurocognitive improvement variance, respectively. The results indicate AE is effective in enhancing neurocognitive functioning in people with schizophrenia and provide preliminary support for the impact of AE-related BDNF up-regulation on neurocognition in this population. Poor AF represents a modifiable risk factor for neurocognitive dysfunction in schizophrenia for which AE training offer a safe, nonstigmatizing, and side-effect-free intervention.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)859-868
Number of pages10
JournalSchizophrenia Bulletin
Volume41
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Jul 1 2015

Fingerprint

Brain-Derived Neurotrophic Factor
Schizophrenia
Randomized Controlled Trials
Exercise
Up-Regulation
Video Games
Population

Keywords

  • active-play video games
  • aerobic fitness
  • brain-derived neurotrophic factor
  • cognition
  • neurotrophins

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health

Cite this

The impact of aerobic exercise on brain-derived neurotrophic factor and neurocognition in individuals with schizophrenia : A single-blind, randomized clinical trial. / Kimhy, David; Vakhrusheva, Julia; Bartels, Matthew N.; Armstrong, Hilary F.; Ballon, Jacob S.; Khan, Samira; Chang, Rachel W.; Hansen, Marie C.; Ayanruoh, Lindsey; Lister, Amanda; Castrén, Eero; Smith, Edward E.; Sloan, Richard P.

In: Schizophrenia Bulletin, Vol. 41, No. 4, 01.07.2015, p. 859-868.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Kimhy, D, Vakhrusheva, J, Bartels, MN, Armstrong, HF, Ballon, JS, Khan, S, Chang, RW, Hansen, MC, Ayanruoh, L, Lister, A, Castrén, E, Smith, EE & Sloan, RP 2015, 'The impact of aerobic exercise on brain-derived neurotrophic factor and neurocognition in individuals with schizophrenia: A single-blind, randomized clinical trial', Schizophrenia Bulletin, vol. 41, no. 4, pp. 859-868. https://doi.org/10.1093/schbul/sbv022
Kimhy, David ; Vakhrusheva, Julia ; Bartels, Matthew N. ; Armstrong, Hilary F. ; Ballon, Jacob S. ; Khan, Samira ; Chang, Rachel W. ; Hansen, Marie C. ; Ayanruoh, Lindsey ; Lister, Amanda ; Castrén, Eero ; Smith, Edward E. ; Sloan, Richard P. / The impact of aerobic exercise on brain-derived neurotrophic factor and neurocognition in individuals with schizophrenia : A single-blind, randomized clinical trial. In: Schizophrenia Bulletin. 2015 ; Vol. 41, No. 4. pp. 859-868.
@article{5010a59261bc40fdb310ecbfea2b914a,
title = "The impact of aerobic exercise on brain-derived neurotrophic factor and neurocognition in individuals with schizophrenia: A single-blind, randomized clinical trial",
abstract = "Individuals with schizophrenia display substantial neurocognitive deficits for which available treatments offer only limited benefits. Yet, findings from studies of animals, clinical and nonclinical populations have linked neurocognitive improvements to increases in aerobic fitness (AF) via aerobic exercise training (AE). Such improvements have been attributed to up-regulation of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF). However, the impact of AE on neurocognition, and the putative role of BDNF, have not been investigated in schizophrenia. Employing a proof-of-concept, single-blind, randomized clinical trial design, 33 individuals with schizophrenia were randomized to receive standard psychiatric treatment (n = 17; {"}treatment as usual{"}; TAU) or attend a 12-week AE program (n = 16) utilizing active-play video games (Xbox 360 Kinect) and traditional AE equipment. Participants completed assessments of AF (indexed by VO2 peak ml/kg/min), neurocognition (MATRICS Consensus Cognitive Battery), and serum-BDNF before and after and 12-week period. Twenty-six participants (79{\%}) completed the study. At follow-up, the AE participants improved their AF by 18.0{\%} vs a -0.5{\%} decline in the TAU group (P =. 002) and improved their neurocognition by 15.1{\%} vs -2.0{\%} decline in the TAU group (P =. 031). Hierarchical multiple regression analyses indicated that enhancement in AF and increases in BDNF predicted 25.4{\%} and 14.6{\%} of the neurocognitive improvement variance, respectively. The results indicate AE is effective in enhancing neurocognitive functioning in people with schizophrenia and provide preliminary support for the impact of AE-related BDNF up-regulation on neurocognition in this population. Poor AF represents a modifiable risk factor for neurocognitive dysfunction in schizophrenia for which AE training offer a safe, nonstigmatizing, and side-effect-free intervention.",
keywords = "active-play video games, aerobic fitness, brain-derived neurotrophic factor, cognition, neurotrophins",
author = "David Kimhy and Julia Vakhrusheva and Bartels, {Matthew N.} and Armstrong, {Hilary F.} and Ballon, {Jacob S.} and Samira Khan and Chang, {Rachel W.} and Hansen, {Marie C.} and Lindsey Ayanruoh and Amanda Lister and Eero Castr{\'e}n and Smith, {Edward E.} and Sloan, {Richard P.}",
year = "2015",
month = "7",
day = "1",
doi = "10.1093/schbul/sbv022",
language = "English (US)",
volume = "41",
pages = "859--868",
journal = "Schizophrenia Bulletin",
issn = "0586-7614",
publisher = "Oxford University Press",
number = "4",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - The impact of aerobic exercise on brain-derived neurotrophic factor and neurocognition in individuals with schizophrenia

T2 - A single-blind, randomized clinical trial

AU - Kimhy, David

AU - Vakhrusheva, Julia

AU - Bartels, Matthew N.

AU - Armstrong, Hilary F.

AU - Ballon, Jacob S.

AU - Khan, Samira

AU - Chang, Rachel W.

AU - Hansen, Marie C.

AU - Ayanruoh, Lindsey

AU - Lister, Amanda

AU - Castrén, Eero

AU - Smith, Edward E.

AU - Sloan, Richard P.

PY - 2015/7/1

Y1 - 2015/7/1

N2 - Individuals with schizophrenia display substantial neurocognitive deficits for which available treatments offer only limited benefits. Yet, findings from studies of animals, clinical and nonclinical populations have linked neurocognitive improvements to increases in aerobic fitness (AF) via aerobic exercise training (AE). Such improvements have been attributed to up-regulation of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF). However, the impact of AE on neurocognition, and the putative role of BDNF, have not been investigated in schizophrenia. Employing a proof-of-concept, single-blind, randomized clinical trial design, 33 individuals with schizophrenia were randomized to receive standard psychiatric treatment (n = 17; "treatment as usual"; TAU) or attend a 12-week AE program (n = 16) utilizing active-play video games (Xbox 360 Kinect) and traditional AE equipment. Participants completed assessments of AF (indexed by VO2 peak ml/kg/min), neurocognition (MATRICS Consensus Cognitive Battery), and serum-BDNF before and after and 12-week period. Twenty-six participants (79%) completed the study. At follow-up, the AE participants improved their AF by 18.0% vs a -0.5% decline in the TAU group (P =. 002) and improved their neurocognition by 15.1% vs -2.0% decline in the TAU group (P =. 031). Hierarchical multiple regression analyses indicated that enhancement in AF and increases in BDNF predicted 25.4% and 14.6% of the neurocognitive improvement variance, respectively. The results indicate AE is effective in enhancing neurocognitive functioning in people with schizophrenia and provide preliminary support for the impact of AE-related BDNF up-regulation on neurocognition in this population. Poor AF represents a modifiable risk factor for neurocognitive dysfunction in schizophrenia for which AE training offer a safe, nonstigmatizing, and side-effect-free intervention.

AB - Individuals with schizophrenia display substantial neurocognitive deficits for which available treatments offer only limited benefits. Yet, findings from studies of animals, clinical and nonclinical populations have linked neurocognitive improvements to increases in aerobic fitness (AF) via aerobic exercise training (AE). Such improvements have been attributed to up-regulation of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF). However, the impact of AE on neurocognition, and the putative role of BDNF, have not been investigated in schizophrenia. Employing a proof-of-concept, single-blind, randomized clinical trial design, 33 individuals with schizophrenia were randomized to receive standard psychiatric treatment (n = 17; "treatment as usual"; TAU) or attend a 12-week AE program (n = 16) utilizing active-play video games (Xbox 360 Kinect) and traditional AE equipment. Participants completed assessments of AF (indexed by VO2 peak ml/kg/min), neurocognition (MATRICS Consensus Cognitive Battery), and serum-BDNF before and after and 12-week period. Twenty-six participants (79%) completed the study. At follow-up, the AE participants improved their AF by 18.0% vs a -0.5% decline in the TAU group (P =. 002) and improved their neurocognition by 15.1% vs -2.0% decline in the TAU group (P =. 031). Hierarchical multiple regression analyses indicated that enhancement in AF and increases in BDNF predicted 25.4% and 14.6% of the neurocognitive improvement variance, respectively. The results indicate AE is effective in enhancing neurocognitive functioning in people with schizophrenia and provide preliminary support for the impact of AE-related BDNF up-regulation on neurocognition in this population. Poor AF represents a modifiable risk factor for neurocognitive dysfunction in schizophrenia for which AE training offer a safe, nonstigmatizing, and side-effect-free intervention.

KW - active-play video games

KW - aerobic fitness

KW - brain-derived neurotrophic factor

KW - cognition

KW - neurotrophins

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=84934917553&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=84934917553&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1093/schbul/sbv022

DO - 10.1093/schbul/sbv022

M3 - Article

C2 - 25805886

AN - SCOPUS:84934917553

VL - 41

SP - 859

EP - 868

JO - Schizophrenia Bulletin

JF - Schizophrenia Bulletin

SN - 0586-7614

IS - 4

ER -