An Electrophysiological Investigation of Interhemispheric Transfer Time in Children and Adolescents with High-Functioning Autism Spectrum Disorders

Abstract

Little is known about the functional impact of putative deficits in white-matter connectivity across the corpus callosum (CC) in individuals with autism spectrum disorders (ASDs). We utilized the temporal sensitivity of event-related potentials to examine the interhemispheric transfer time (IHTT) of basic visual information across the CC in youth with high-functioning ASD relative to healthy controls. We conducted two experiments: a visual letter matching experiment (n = 46) and a visual picture matching experiment, (n = 48) and utilized both electrophysiological (N1 and P1 amplitudes and latencies) and behavioral [response times (RTs), error rates] indices of IHTT. There were no significant group differences on either experiment for RTs, error rates, or N1 and P1 latencies, suggesting that on basic tasks the timing of information flow across the CC may not be altered in high functioning ASD.

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Acknowledgments

We gratefully acknowledge the assistance of Kyle Jamison, Whitney Worsham, Whitney Ernst, and Tiffany Newton in data collection. This study was supported by funds from the Brigham Young University College of Family, Home, and Social Sciences, and the Poelman Foundation.

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The authors report no conflicts of interest.

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Correspondence to Michael J. Larson.

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Clawson, A., Clayson, P.E., South, M. et al. An Electrophysiological Investigation of Interhemispheric Transfer Time in Children and Adolescents with High-Functioning Autism Spectrum Disorders. J Autism Dev Disord 45, 363–375 (2015). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10803-013-1895-7

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Keywords

  • Autism
  • Interhemispheric transfer time
  • N1
  • P1
  • Event-related potential
  • Corpus callosum
  • White matter