Neuropathways of theory of mind in schizophrenia: A systematic review and meta-analysis

Yiting Weng, Jingxia Lin, Daniel Kwasi Ahorsu, Hector W.H. Tsang (Corresponding Author)

Research output: Journal article publicationReview articleAcademic researchpeer-review

15 Citations (Scopus)


Background: Social cognition is significantly associated with daily functioning in patients with schizophrenia. Its neural basis remains unknown. Methods: A systematic literature search was performed. Studies using imaging to measure theory of mind (ToM) in schizophrenia were identified. Imaging data were synthesized using the seed-based d mapping approach. Potential neuropathways were hypothesized based on the identified brain regions activated during ToM tasks. Results: A total of 25 studies were included in the present study. Compared with healthy people, patients with schizophrenia showed hyperactivations in superior longitudinal fasciculus II and hypoactivations in superior frontal gyrus, precuneus and cuneus, and precentral gyrus during ToM tasks. The primary brain regions involved in the potential neuropathways in schizophrenia were the middle temporal gyrus, superior and inferior frontal gyrus, and supplementary motor areas. Conclusion: Deactivated brain regions in schizophrenia overlapped with the default mode and salience networks. Our findings shed light on how to develop a diagnostic tool for deficits in social cognition using neuroimaging techniques and effective therapeutic interventions to rectify dysfunction in schizophrenia.

Original languageEnglish
Article number104625
JournalNeuroscience and Biobehavioral Reviews
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2022


  • Neuroimaging Techniques
  • Neuropathways
  • Schizophrenia
  • Social cognition
  • Theory of mind

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuropsychology and Physiological Psychology
  • Cognitive Neuroscience
  • Behavioral Neuroscience


Dive into the research topics of 'Neuropathways of theory of mind in schizophrenia: A systematic review and meta-analysis'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this