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Processing of emotion words by patients with Autism Spectrum Disorders: Evidence from reaction times and EEG

Lartseva, A., Dijkstra, T., Kan, C. C., & Buitelaar, J. K. (2014). Processing of emotion words by patients with Autism Spectrum Disorders: Evidence from reaction times and EEG. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, 44, 2882-2894. doi:10.1007/s10803-014-2149-z.
This study investigated processing of emotion words in autism spectrum disorders (ASD) using reaction times and event-related potentials (ERP). Adults with (n = 21) and without (n = 20) ASD performed a lexical decision task on emotion and neutral words while their brain activity was recorded. Both groups showed faster responses to emotion words compared to neutral, suggesting intact early processing of emotion in ASD. In the ERPs, the control group showed a typical late positive component (LPC) at 400-600 ms for emotion words compared to neutral, while the ASD group showed no LPC. The between-group difference in LPC amplitude was significant, suggesting that emotion words were processed differently by individuals with ASD, although their behavioral performance was similar to that of typical individuals
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The Max Planck Institute for Psycholinguistics is an institute of the German Max Planck Society. Our mission is to undertake basic research into the psychological,social and biological foundations of language. The goal is to understand how our minds and brains process language, how language interacts with other aspects of mind, and how we can learn languages of quite different types.

The institute is situated on the campus of the Radboud University. We participate in the Donders Institute for Brain, Cognition and Behaviour, and have particularly close ties to that institute's Centre for Cognitive Neuroimaging. We also participate in the Centre for Language Studies. A joint graduate school, the IMPRS in Language Sciences, links the Donders Institute, the CLS and the MPI.

 

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