Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders

, Volume 37, Issue 7, pp 1386–1392 | Cite as

Brief Report: Recognition of Emotional and Non-emotional Biological Motion in Individuals with Autistic Spectrum Disorders

  • B. Hubert
  • B. Wicker
  • D. G. Moore
  • E. Monfardini
  • H. Duverger
  • D. Da Fonséca
  • C. Deruelle
Brief Communication

Abstract

This study aimed to explore the perception of different components of biological movement in individuals with autism and Asperger syndrome. The ability to recognize a person’s actions, subjective states, emotions, and objects conveyed by moving point-light displays was assessed in 19 participants with autism and 19 comparable typical control participants. Results showed that the participants with autism were as able as controls to name point-light displays of non-human objects and human actions. In contrast, they were significantly poorer at labeling emotional displays, suggesting that they are specifically impaired in attending to emotional states. Most studies have highlighted an emotional deficit in facial expression perception; our results extend this hypothesized deficit to the perception and interpretation of whole-body biological movements.

Keywords

Biological motion Emotion Autism 

Notes

Acknowledgments

Authors are especially indebted to the autistic and control adults and adolescents who participated in this study. This research was funded by a grant from France Telecom to BW and by SEDSU (FP6-2003-NEST-PATH).

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  • B. Hubert
    • 1
  • B. Wicker
    • 1
  • D. G. Moore
    • 2
  • E. Monfardini
    • 1
  • H. Duverger
    • 1
  • D. Da Fonséca
    • 1
  • C. Deruelle
    • 1
  1. 1.Mediterranean Institute of Cognitive NeurosciencesCNRSMarseille cedex 20France
  2. 2.School of PsychologyUniversity of East LondonLondonUK

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