Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders

, Volume 49, Issue 12, pp 4751–4760 | Cite as

Effects of Overweight or Obesity on Brain Resting State Functional Connectivity of Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder

  • Chanaka N. KahathuduwaEmail author
  • Blake West
  • Ann Mastergeorge
Original Paper


Evidence on neurophysiological correlates of coexisting autism spectrum disorders (ASD) and overweight/obesity may elucidate mechanisms leading to the observed greater risk of obesity in children with ASD. An exploratory secondary data analysis was performed on resting state functional magnetic resonance imaging (rs-fMRI) data of children downloaded from the ABIDE Preprocessed database (n = 81). Children with isolated ASD showed hypo-connectivity between anterior and posterior default mode network (DMN) (p = 0.003; FWER). Children with coexisting ASD and overweight/obesity showed hyper-connectivity between anterior and posterior DMN (p = 0.015; FWER). More evidence is needed to confirm these contrasting rs-fMRI connectivity profiles and to explicate causal inferences regarding neurophysiological mechanisms associated with coexisting ASD and overweight/obesity.


Autism spectrum disorder Obesity Overweight Brain Magnetic resonance imaging Functional neuroimaging Connectome 



The authors wish to acknowledge ABIDE Preprocessed ( for providing access to preprocessed neuroimaging data to perform the analyses presented in this manuscript.

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of interest

The authors have no other potential conflicts of interest to declare.

Supplementary material

10803_2019_4187_MOESM1_ESM.docx (185 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (DOCX 185 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Chanaka N. Kahathuduwa
    • 1
    • 2
    • 3
    Email author
  • Blake West
    • 1
  • Ann Mastergeorge
    • 1
    • 4
  1. 1.Department of Human Development and Family Studies, College of Human SciencesTexas Tech UniversityLubbockUSA
  2. 2.Department of Psychiatry, School of MedicineTexas Tech University Health Sciences CenterLubbock, TXUSA
  3. 3.Department of Laboratory Science and Primary Care, School of Health ProfessionsTexas Tech University Health Sciences CenterLubbockUSA
  4. 4.The Burkhart Center for Autism Education and ResearchTexas Tech UniversityLubbockUSA

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