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The autistic brain can process local but not global emotion regularities in facial and musical sequences

Xu, J., Zhou, L., Liu, F. ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-7776-0222, Xue, C., Jiang, J. and Jiang, C. (2021) The autistic brain can process local but not global emotion regularities in facial and musical sequences. Autism Research. ISSN 1939-3806 (In Press)

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Abstract/Summary

Whether autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is associated with a global processing deficit remains controversial. Global integration requires extraction of regularity across various timescales, yet little is known about how individuals with ASD process regularity at local (short timescale) versus global (long timescale) levels. To this end, we used event-related potentials to investigate whether individuals with ASD would show different neural responses to local (within trial) versus global (across trials) emotion regularities extracted from sequential facial expressions; and if so, whether this visual abnormality would generalize to the music (auditory) domain. Twenty individuals with ASD and 21 age- and IQ-matched individuals with typical development participated in this study. At an early processing stage, ASD participants exhibited preserved neural responses to violations of local emotion regularity for both faces and music. At a later stage, however, there was an absence of neural responses in ASD to violations of global emotion regularity for both faces and music. These findings suggest that the autistic brain responses to emotion regularity are modulated by the timescale of sequential stimuli, and provide insight into the neural mechanisms underlying emotional processing in ASD.

Item Type:Article
Refereed:Yes
Divisions:Interdisciplinary Research Centres (IDRCs) > Centre for Integrative Neuroscience and Neurodynamics (CINN)
Interdisciplinary centres and themes > ASD (Autism Spectrum Disorders) Research Network
Life Sciences > School of Psychology and Clinical Language Sciences > Department of Psychology
Life Sciences > School of Psychology and Clinical Language Sciences > Language and Cognition
Life Sciences > School of Psychology and Clinical Language Sciences > Psychopathology and Affective Neuroscience
Life Sciences > School of Psychology and Clinical Language Sciences > Perception and Action
ID Code:101086
Publisher:John Wiley

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