Effect of visual stimuli of pain on empathy brain network in people with and without Autism Spectrum Disorder.

Details

Serval ID
serval:BIB_302BEE8EEC4D
Type
Article: article from journal or magazin.
Collection
Publications
Institution
Title
Effect of visual stimuli of pain on empathy brain network in people with and without Autism Spectrum Disorder.
Journal
The European journal of neuroscience
Author(s)
Lassalle A., Zürcher N.R., Hippolyte L., Billstedt E., Porro C.A., Benuzzi F., Solomon P., Prkachin K.M., Lemonnier E., Gillberg C., Åsberg Johnels J., Hadjikhani N.
ISSN
1460-9568 (Electronic)
ISSN-L
0953-816X
Publication state
Published
Issued date
09/2018
Peer-reviewed
Oui
Volume
48
Number
6
Pages
2333-2342
Language
english
Notes
Publication types: Journal Article
Publication Status: ppublish
Abstract
The extent to which affective empathy is impaired in Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) remains unclear, as some-but not all-previous neuroimaging studies investigating empathy for pain in ASD have shown similar activation levels to those of neurotypicals individuals. These inconsistent results could be due to the use of different empathy-eliciting stimuli. While some studies used pictures of faces exhibiting a painful expression, others used pictures of limbs in painful situations. In this study, we used fMRI to compare activation in areas associated with empathy processing (empathy network) for these two types of stimuli in 31 participants (16 with ASD, 15 controls). We found a group difference in the inferior frontal gyrus (IFG) and the thalamus when participants viewed stimuli of limbs in painful situations, but not when they viewed face stimuli with a painful expression. Both groups of participants activated their empathy network more when viewing pictures of limbs in painful situations than when viewing pictures of faces with a painful expression; this increased activation for limbs versus faces was significantly enhanced in controls relative to ASD participants, especially in the secondary somatosensory cortex (SII). Our findings suggest that empathy defect of people with ASD is contingent upon the type of stimuli used, and may be related to the level of Mirror Neuron System involvement, as brain regions showing group differences (IFG, SII) underlie embodiment. We discuss the potential clinical implications of our findings in terms of developing interventions boosting the empathetic abilities of people with ASD.
Keywords
fMRI, Autism, empathy, pain perception, fMRI, autism
Pubmed
Web of science
Create date
03/09/2018 11:35
Last modification date
20/08/2019 13:14
Usage data