Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders

, Volume 29, Issue 1, pp 19–31 | Cite as

Brain Mapping of Language and Auditory Perception in High-Functioning Autistic Adults: A PET Study

  • R.-A. MüllerEmail author
  • M. E. Behen
  • R. D. Rothermel
  • D. C. Chugani
  • O. Muzik
  • T. J. Mangner
  • H. T. Chugani


We examined the brain organization for language and auditory functions in five high-functioning autistic and five normal adults, using [15O]-water positron emission tomography (PET). Cerebral blood flow was studied for rest, listening to tones, and listening to, repeating, and generating sentences. The autism group (compared to the control group) showed (a) reversed hemispheric dominance during verbal auditory stimulation; (b) a trend towards reduced activation of auditory cortex during acoustic stimulation; and (c) reduced cerebellar activation during nonverbal auditory perception and possibly expressive language. These results are compatible with findings of cerebellar anomalies and may suggest a tendency towards atypical dominance for language in autism.

Autism language auditory perception functional asymmetry cerebellum positron emission tomography 


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Copyright information

© Plenum Publishing Corporation 1999

Authors and Affiliations

  • R.-A. Müller
    • 1
    Email author
  • M. E. Behen
    • 1
  • R. D. Rothermel
    • 1
    • 3
  • D. C. Chugani
    • 1
    • 4
  • O. Muzik
    • 1
  • T. J. Mangner
    • 4
  • H. T. Chugani
    • 1
    • 2
    • 4
  1. 1.Department of PediatricsWayne State University Medical CenterDetroit
  2. 2.Department of NeurologyWayne State University Medical CenterDetroit
  3. 3.Department of PsychiatryWayne State University Medical CenterDetroit
  4. 4.Department of RadiologyWayne State University Medical CenterDetroit

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