alexa Autism Spectrum Disorder and Co-Existing Conditions: A Lexical Decision ERP Study
ISSN: 2471-2701

Clinical and Experimental Psychology
Open Access

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Research Article

Autism Spectrum Disorder and Co-Existing Conditions: A Lexical Decision ERP Study

Ashleigh Saunders, Ian J Kirk and Karen E Waldie*

School of Psychology, The University of Auckland, Auckland, New Zealand

*Corresponding Author:
Karen E Waldie, PhD
School of Psychology, The University of Auckland
Private Bag 92019, Auckland, New Zealand
Tel: +6421427728
E-mail: [email protected]

Received Date: September 17, 2015; Accepted Date: September 19, 2015; Published Date: October 20, 2015

Citation: Saunders A, Kirk IJ, Waldie KE (2015) Autism Spectrum Disorder and Co-Existing Conditions: A Lexical Decision Erp Study. Clin Exp Psychol 1: 101. doi: 10.4172/2471-2701.100101

Copyright: © 2015 Saunders A, et al.. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.



The current study sought to clarify the nature of lexical decision-making information processing, using a lexical decision paradigm during EEG, in 4 groups: pure-ASD; pure-ADHD; pure-anxiety; and neurotypical controls. We also aimed to understand whether there were differences between groups when ASD presents as a comorbid condition (ASD + ADHD). The P100 and the N170 components of the evoked potential (ERPs) were the focus of analyses. Overall, we found larger P100 amplitudes in the right (relative to the left) hemisphere in neurotypical controls. This early ERP component likely reflects pre-linguistic processing (e.g., the sorting of nouns into categories) at a stage before the language-dominant left hemisphere takes over. We also found that those with pure-ADHD had longer P100 latencies than both the pure-anxiety and pure-ASD groups towards all lexical stimuli. The pure-ADHD group also showed smaller amplitudes toward word stimuli than toward pseudowords and nonwords. The ASD + ADHD group had significantly longer latencies towards pseudowords than the pure-ASD group. A unique pattern of ERPs was therefore observed in the comorbid group, which suggests that the two conditions are separate. This finding is in accord with the latest revision of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-V).


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