Altered connectivity in adults with autism spectrum disorder during complex facial emotion recognition. An EEG imaginary coherence study.

Published July 2018


Difficulties in Facial Emotion Recognition (FER) are commonly associated with individuals diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). However, the mechanisms underlying these impairments remain inconclusive. While atypical cortical connectivity has been observed in autistic individuals, there is a paucity of investigation during cognitive tasks such as FER. It is possible that atypical cortical connectivity may underlie FER impairments in this population. Electroencephalography (EEG) Imaginary Coherence was examined in 22 autistic adults and 23 typically developing (TD) matched controls during a complex, dynamic FER task. Autistic adults demonstrated reduced coherence between both short and long range inter-hemispheric electrodes. By contrast, short range intra-hemispheric connectivity was increased in frontal and occipital regions during FER. These findings suggest altered network functioning in ASD.
Black, M.H., Almabruk, T., Albrecht, M.A., Chen, N.T., Lipp, O.V., Bölte, S., Tan, T. & Girdler, S. (2018). Altered connectivity in autistic during complex facial emotion recognition: A study of EEG imaginary coherence. Conference proceedings: Annual International Conference of the IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society. 2752-2755. doi: 10.1109/EMBC.2018.8512802

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