Atypical brain structures as a function of gray matter volume (GMV) and gray matter density (GMD) in young adults relating to autism spectrum traits

Yaxu, Yu, Ren, Zhiting, Ward, Jamie and Jiang, Qiu (2020) Atypical brain structures as a function of gray matter volume (GMV) and gray matter density (GMD) in young adults relating to autism spectrum traits. Frontiers in Psychology, 11. pp. 1-9. ISSN 1664-1078

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Abstract

Individuals with autistic traits are those who present in the normal population with characteristics of social, communication, personality, and cognitive impairments but do not meet the clinical threshold for autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Most studies have focused on the abnormalities in ASD patients rather than on individuals with autistic traits. In this study, we focused on the behaviors of a large sample (N = 401) of Chinese individuals with different levels of autistic traits, measured using the Autism Spectrum Quotient, and applied voxel-based morphometry (VBM) to determine their association to differences in brain structure. The results mainly showed that the correlation between gray matter volume (GMV) and gray matter density of the brain and the Autism Spectrum Quotient was significant in these regions: the right middle frontal gyrus, which are involved in social processing and social reasoning; the left parahippocampal gyrus, which is involved in socioemotional behaviors and unconscious relational memory encoding; and the right superior parietal lobule, which are involved in cognitive control and the ability to show attention to detail. These findings reveal that people with autistic traits in the normal population have atypical development in GMV and gray matter density, which may affect their social functioning and communication ability.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: autism spectrum traits, gray matter density, gray matter volume, voxel-based morphometry, young adults
Schools and Departments: School of Psychology > Psychology
SWORD Depositor: Mx Elements Account
Depositing User: Mx Elements Account
Date Deposited: 25 Jun 2020 14:59
Last Modified: 25 Jun 2020 15:00
URI: http://sro.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/92122

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