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Atypical neural activity in males but not females with autism spectrum disorder

Kirkovski, Melissa, Enticott, Peter G., Hughes, Matthew E., Rossell, Susan L. and Fitzgerald, Paul B. 2016, Atypical neural activity in males but not females with autism spectrum disorder, Journal of autism and developmental disorders, vol. 46, no. 3, pp. 954-963, doi: 10.1007/s10803-015-2639-7.

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Title Atypical neural activity in males but not females with autism spectrum disorder
Author(s) Kirkovski, MelissaORCID iD for Kirkovski, Melissa orcid.org/0000-0003-3395-8525
Enticott, Peter G.ORCID iD for Enticott, Peter G. orcid.org/0000-0002-6638-951X
Hughes, Matthew E.
Rossell, Susan L.
Fitzgerald, Paul B.
Journal name Journal of autism and developmental disorders
Volume number 46
Issue number 3
Start page 954
End page 963
Total pages 10
Publisher Springer
Place of publication New York, N.Y.
Publication date 2016-03
ISSN 1573-3432
Keyword(s) Autism spectrum disorder
Functional magnetic resonance imaging
Medial prefrontal cortex
Mentalizing network
Sex differences
Superior temporal sulcus
Temporo-parietal junction
Theory of mind
Summary The medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) and the right temporo-parietal junction (rTPj) are highly involved in social understanding, a core area of impairment in autism spectrum disorder (ASD). We used fMRI to investigate sex differences in the neural correlates of social understanding in 27 high-functioning adults with ASD and 23 matched controls. There were no differences in neural activity in the mPFC or rTPj between groups during social processing. Whole brain analysis revealed decreased activity in the posterior superior temporal sulcus in males with ASD compared to control males while processing social information. This pattern was not observed in the female sub-sample. The current study indicates that sex mediates the neurobiology of ASD, particularly with respect to processing social information.
Language eng
DOI 10.1007/s10803-015-2639-7
Field of Research 170101 Biological Psychology (Neuropsychology, Psychopharmacology, Physiological Psychology)
13 Education
17 Psychology And Cognitive Sciences
Socio Economic Objective 920410 Mental Health
HERDC Research category C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
ERA Research output type C Journal article
Copyright notice ©2016, Springer
Persistent URL http://hdl.handle.net/10536/DRO/DU:30079691

Document type: Journal Article
Collections: School of Psychology
Centre for Mental Health and Wellbeing Research
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