Relative Average Look Duration and its Association with Neurophysiological Activity in Young Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder.

Journal Article (Journal Article)

Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) is characterized by early attentional differences that often precede the hallmark symptoms of social communication impairments. Development of novel measures of attentional behaviors may lead to earlier identification of children at risk for ASD. In this work, we first introduce a behavioral measure, Relative Average Look Duration (RALD), indicating attentional preference to different stimuli, such as social versus nonsocial stimuli; and then study its association with neurophysiological activity. We show that (1) ASD and typically developing (TD) children differ in both (absolute) Average Look Duration (ALD) and RALD to stimuli during an EEG experiment, with the most pronounced differences in looking at social stimuli; and (2) associations between looking behaviors and neurophysiological activity, as measured by EEG, are different for children with ASD versus TD. Even when ASD children show attentional engagement to social content, our results suggest that their underlying brain activity is different than TD children. This study therefore introduces a new measure of social/nonsocial attentional preference in ASD and demonstrates the value of incorporating attentional variables measured simultaneously with EEG into the analysis pipeline.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Isaev, DY; Major, S; Murias, M; Carpenter, KLH; Carlson, D; Sapiro, G; Dawson, G

Published Date

  • February 5, 2020

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 10 / 1

Start / End Page

  • 1912 -

PubMed ID

  • 32024855

Pubmed Central ID

  • PMC7002421

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 2045-2322

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1038/s41598-020-57902-1


  • eng

Conference Location

  • England