Abnormal Attention in Autism Shown by Steady-State Visual Evoked Potentials
Autism 4(3):269-285 (September 2000)
Address for correspondence: mkb4@Cornell.edu
ABSTRACT: This study examined brain electrical responses as a physiological measure of speed and specificity of attentional shifting in eight adult males with autism. Subjects were required to shift attention between rapidly flashed targets alternating between left and right visual hemifields. When targets were separated by less than 700ms, steady-state brain electrical response in both hemispheres was augmented and background EEG decreased for rightward shifts as compared to leftward shifts. At longer separations, persons with autism showed no modulation of background EEG, and high variability in steady-state response. These results contrast with those in normal controls, where in each hemisphere separately steady-state response increased and background EEG decreased for shifts directed contralaterally to that hemisphere. Group differences were significant at p<0.04 for the steady state response and p<0.0001 for the background EEG. Lack of hemispherically independent modulation in autism may reflect the operation of a nonspecific mechanism of sensory gating.
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|Download raw experimental data|
(600 MB .tar.gz file, same password)
|The raw data are in NeuroScan multiplexed (not SynAmps block) .CNT format. The accompanying C programs provide some documentation as to how these files are to be read. I haven’t the time to provide support for these very old data which were collected in 1993-1994; you’re on your own to sort it out from what’s there.|
CITED IN PUBLICATIONS BY OTHERS:
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CITED IN MY OTHER PUBLICATIONS:
- Belmonte MK, Yurgelun-Todd DA. Anatomic dissociation of selective and suppressive processes in visual attention. NeuroImage 19(1):180-189 (May 2003).
- Belmonte MK, Yurgelun-Todd DA. Functional anatomy of impaired selective attention and compensatory processing in autism. Cognitive Brain Research 17(3):651-664 (October 2003).
- Belmonte MK, Cook EH, Anderson GM, Rubenstein JL, Greenough WT, Beckel-Mitchener A, Courchesne E, Boulanger LM, Powell SB, Levitt PR, Perry EK, Jiang YH, DeLorey TM, Tierney E. Autism as a disorder of neural information processing: directions for research and targets for therapy. Molecular Psychiatry 9(7):646-663 (July 2004). Unabridged edition at http://www.cureautismnow.org/conferences/summitmeetings/
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- Baron-Cohen S, Belmonte MK. Autism: a window onto the development of the social and the analytic brain. Annual Review of Neuroscience 28:109-126 (2005).
- Bonneh YS, Belmonte MK, Pei F, Iversen PE, Kenet T, Akshoomoff NA, Adini Y, Simon HJ, Moore CI, Houde JF, Merzenich MM. Cross-modal extinction in a boy with severely autistic behaviour and high verbal intelligence. Cognitive Neuropsychology 25(5):635-652 (2008).
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- Belmonte MK. What’s the story behind ‘theory of mind’ and autism? Journal of Consciousness Studies 16(6-8):118-139 (June-August 2009).