Differential electrophysiological responses to biological motion in children and adults with and without autism spectrum disorders

Masahiro Hirai, Atsuko Gunji, Yuki Inoue, Yosuke Kita, Takashi Hayashi, Kengo Nishimaki, Miho Nakamura, Ryusuke Kakigi, Masumi Inagaki

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Although atypical processing of biological motion (BM) in individuals with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) has been reported, the temporal profile of the neural response to BM is not well explored. In the current study, event-related potentials (ERPs) were measured in 12 individuals with ASD, aged 8-22 years, and 12 age- and gender-matched normal controls, to investigate the electrophysiological response to BM and a control visual stimulus. By introducing a novel experimental paradigm that can dissociate the electrophysiological responses to motion processing and the global shape processing of BM, we found that: (1) the timing of the response was preserved in ASD groups, whereas (2) the ERP response to BM was significantly enhanced compared with scrambled point-light motion (SM) in normal controls; the responses to both BM and SM were not significantly different in subjects with ASD. Because we did not find a significant group effect on the peak and mean amplitude induced by BM, it is presumed that this atypical response in individuals with ASD was due to over-sensitivity to the local motion signals. This experimental paradigm showed atypical local motion processing of BM in individuals with ASD.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1623-1634
Number of pages12
JournalResearch in Autism Spectrum Disorders
Volume8
Issue number12
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2014 Dec 1
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Autism spectrum disorder
  • Biological motion
  • Children
  • Development
  • Event-related potential (ERP)
  • Point-light walker

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health

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