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A specific hypoactivation of right temporo-parietal junction/posterior superior temporal sulcus in response to socially awkward situations in autism

Pantelis, Peter C. and Byrge, Lisa and Tyszka, J. Michael and Adolphs, Ralph and Kennedy, Daniel P. (2015) A specific hypoactivation of right temporo-parietal junction/posterior superior temporal sulcus in response to socially awkward situations in autism. Social Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience, 10 (10). pp. 1348-1356. ISSN 1749-5016. PMCID PMC4590532. https://resolver.caltech.edu/CaltechAUTHORS:20150305-103507972

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Abstract

People with autism spectrum disorders (ASD) often have difficulty comprehending social situations in the complex, dynamic contexts encountered in the real world. To study the social brain under conditions which approximate naturalistic situations, we measured brain activity with fMRI while participants watched a full-length episode of the sitcom The Office. Having quantified the degree of social awkwardness at each moment of the episode, as judged by an independent sample of controls, we found that both individuals with ASD and control participants showed reliable activation of several brain regions commonly associated with social perception and cognition (e.g., those comprising the “mentalizing network”) during the more awkward moments. However, individuals with ASD showed less activity than controls in a region near right temporo-parietal junction (RTPJ) extending into the posterior end of the right superior temporal sulcus (RSTS). Further analyses suggested that, despite the free-form nature of the experimental design, this group difference was specific to this RTPJ/RSTS area of the mentalizing network; other regions of interest showed similar activity across groups with respect to both location and magnitude. These findings add support to a body of evidence suggesting that RTPJ/RSTS plays a special role in social processes across modalities and may function atypically in individuals with ASD navigating the social world.


Item Type:Article
Related URLs:
URLURL TypeDescription
http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/scan/nsv021DOIArticle
http://scan.oxfordjournals.org/content/10/10/1348PublisherArticle
http://scan.oxfordjournals.org/content/10/10/1348/suppl/DC1PublisherSupplementary Data
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4590532/PubMed CentralArticle
ORCID:
AuthorORCID
Tyszka, J. Michael0000-0001-9342-9014
Adolphs, Ralph0000-0002-8053-9692
Kennedy, Daniel P.0000-0002-5915-0893
Additional Information:© 2015 The Authors. Published by Oxford University Press. Received June 23, 2014. Revision received February 10, 2015. Accepted February 13, 2015. First published online: February 19, 2015. This work was supported by the National Institute of Mental Health at the National Institutes of Health (R00-MH094409 to D.P.K.) and the Brain & Behavior Research Foundation (previously NARSAD) Young Investigator Award (to D.P.K.).
Funders:
Funding AgencyGrant Number
NIHR00-MH094409
Brain and Behavior Research FoundationUNSPECIFIED
National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH)UNSPECIFIED
Issue or Number:10
PubMed Central ID:PMC4590532
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20150305-103507972
Persistent URL:https://resolver.caltech.edu/CaltechAUTHORS:20150305-103507972
Official Citation:Peter C. Pantelis, Lisa Byrge, J. Michael Tyszka, Ralph Adolphs, and Daniel P. Kennedy A specific hypoactivation of right temporo-parietal junction/posterior superior temporal sulcus in response to socially awkward situations in autism Soc Cogn Affect Neurosci (2015) 10 (10): 1348-1356 first published online February 19, 2015 doi:10.1093/scan/nsv021
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:55539
Collection:CaltechAUTHORS
Deposited By: Tony Diaz
Deposited On:05 Mar 2015 21:12
Last Modified:03 Oct 2019 08:06

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