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Neural Targets in the Study and Treatment of Social Cognition in Autism Spectrum Disorder

  • Arshya Vahabzadeh
  • Samantha M. Landino
  • Beate C. Finger
  • William A. CarlezonJr.
  • Christopher J. McDougleEmail author
Part of the Handbook of Experimental Pharmacology book series (HEP, volume 228)

Abstract

The purpose of this chapter is to present results from recent research on social cognition in autism spectrum disorder (ASD). The clinical phenomenology and neuroanatomical circuitry of ASD are first briefly described. The neuropharmacology of social cognition in animal models of ASD and humans is then addressed. Next, preclinical and clinical research on the neurohormone oxytocin is reviewed. This is followed by a presentation of results from preclinical and clinical studies on the excitatory amino acid glutamate. Finally, the role of neuroinflammation in ASD is addressed from the perspectives of preclinical neuroscience and research involving humans with ASD.

Keywords

Autism Social cognition Neuropharmacology Preclinical Oxytocin Glutamate Neuroinflammation 

Notes

Acknowledgment

This work was supported, in part, by the Nancy Lurie Marks Family Foundation and the Robert and Donna Landreth Fund.

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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • Arshya Vahabzadeh
    • 1
    • 2
    • 3
  • Samantha M. Landino
    • 4
  • Beate C. Finger
    • 3
    • 4
  • William A. CarlezonJr.
    • 3
    • 4
  • Christopher J. McDougle
    • 1
    • 3
    • 5
    Email author
  1. 1.Massachusetts General HospitalBostonUSA
  2. 2.McLean HospitalBelmontUSA
  3. 3.Harvard Medical SchoolBostonUSA
  4. 4.Behavioral Genetics LaboratoryMcLean HospitalBelmontUSA
  5. 5.Lurie Center for AutismLexingtonUSA

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