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Healthy Adolescent Performance on the MATRICS Consensus Cognitive Battery (MCCB): Developmental Data from Two Samples of Volunteers

By William S. Stone, Raquelle I. Mesholam-Gately, Anthony J. Giuliano, Kristen A. Woodberry, Jean Addington, Carrie E. Bearden, Kristin S. Cadenhead, Tyrone D. Cannon, Barbara A. Cornblatt, Daniel H. Mathalon, Thomas H. McGlashan, Diana O. Perkins, Ming T. Tsuang, Elaine F. Walker, Scott W. Woods, Robert W. McCarley, Robert Heinssen, Michael F. Green, Keith Nuechterlein, and Larry J. Seidman | Schizophrenia Research | February 16, 2016


The MATRICS Consensus Cognitive Battery (MCCB) fills a significant need for a standardized battery of cognitive tests to use in clinical trials for schizophrenia in adults aged 20–59. A need remains, however, to develop norms for younger individuals, who also show elevated risks for schizophrenia. Toward this end, we assessed performance in healthy adolescents. Baseline MCCB, reading and IQ data were obtained from healthy controls (ages 12–19) participating in two concurrent NIMH-funded studies: North American Prodromal Longitudinal Study phase 2 (NAPLS-2; n = 126) and Boston Center for Intervention Development and Applied Research (CIDAR; n = 13). All MCCB tests were administered except the Managing Emotions subtest from the Mayer–Salovey–Caruso Emotional Intelligence Test. Data were collected from 8 sites across North America. MCCB scores were presented in four 2-year age cohorts as T-scores for each test and cognitive domain, and analyzed for effects of age and sex. Due to IQ differences between age-grouped subsamples, IQ served as a covariate in analyses. Overall and sex-based raw scores for individual MCCB tests are presented for each age-based cohort. Adolescents generally showed improvement with age in most MCCB cognitive domains, with the clearest linear trends in Attention/Vigilance and Working Memory. These control data show that healthy adolescence is a dynamic period for cognitive development that is marked by substantial improvement in MCCB performance through the 12–19 age range. They also provide healthy comparison raw scores to facilitate clinical evaluations of adolescents, including those at risk for developing psychiatric disorders such as schizophrenia-related conditions.

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