Effects of amphetamine on visuospatial working memory performance in schizophrenia spectrum personality disorder

Richelle M. Kirrane, Vivian Mitropoulou, Melissa Nunn, Antonia S. New, Philip D. Harvey, Frances Schopick, Jeremy Silverman, Larry J. Siever

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

46 Scopus citations


Our objective was to determine if amphetamine improves visuospatial working memory, which is impaired in the schizophrenia spectrum and may be modulated by dopamine in prefrontal cortex. To this end, oral amphetamine (30 mg) was administered to 12 patients with schizophrenia spectrum personality disorders and 13 patients with other, nonschizophrenia-related personality disorders. Visuospatial working memory was assessed using the Dot test; a test in which subjects are asked to memorize and reproduce the position of a dot on a sheet of paper. Patients with schizophrenia spectrum personality disorders performed significantly worse than the comparison group in the placebo condition and showed significantly greater improvement after amphetamine, as compared to a nonschizophrenia-related personality disorder comparison group. Patients with greatest impairment at baseline improved most. Amphetamine tended to improve negative symptoms; whereas, positive symptoms remained unchanged. Amphetamine may improve visuospatial working memory in schizophrenia spectrum patients. Copyright (C) 2000 American College of Neuropsychopharmacology.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)14-18
Number of pages5
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2000
Externally publishedYes


  • Amphetamine
  • Cognitive testing
  • Dopamine
  • Negative symptoms
  • Schizophrenia spectrum
  • Visuospatial working memory

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology


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