von Economo neurons in autism: A stereologic study of the frontoinsular cortex in children.

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State: Public
Version: author
Serval ID
serval:BIB_11B9594EC1E9
Type
Article: article from journal or magazin.
Collection
Publications
Institution
Title
von Economo neurons in autism: A stereologic study of the frontoinsular cortex in children.
Journal
Brain Research
Author(s)
Santos M., Uppal N., Butti C., Wicinski B., Schmeidler J., Giannakopoulos P., Heinsen H., Schmitz C., Hof P.R.
ISSN
1872-6240[electronic], 0006-8993[linking]
Publication state
Published
Issued date
2011
Peer-reviewed
Oui
Volume
1380
Pages
206-217
Language
english
Notes
Publication types: Journal Article
Publication Status: ppublish
Abstract
The presence of von Economo neurons (VENs) in the frontoinsular cortex (FI) has been linked to a possible role in the integration of bodily feelings, emotional regulation, and goal-directed behaviors. They have also been implicated in fast intuitive evaluation of complex social situations. Several studies reported a decreased number of VENs in neuropsychiatric diseases in which the "embodied" dimension of social cognition is markedly affected. Neuropathological analyses of VENs in patients with autism are few and did not report alterations in VEN numbers. In this study we re-evaluated the possible presence of changes in VEN numbers and their relationship with the diagnosis of autism. Using a stereologic approach we quantified VENs and pyramidal neurons in layer V of FI in postmortem brains of four young patients with autism and three comparably aged controls. We also investigated possible autism-related differences in FI layer V volume. Patients with autism consistently had a significantly higher ratio of VENs to pyramidal neurons (p=0.020) than control subjects. This result may reflect the presence of neuronal overgrowth in young patients with autism and may also be related to alterations in migration, cortical lamination, and apoptosis. Higher numbers of VENs in the FI of patients with autism may also underlie a heightened interoception, described in some clinical observations.
Pubmed
Web of science
Create date
07/03/2011 11:22
Last modification date
27/01/2020 7:08
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