UCL  IRIS
Institutional Research Information Service
UCL Logo
Please report any queries concerning the funding data grouped in the sections named "Externally Awarded" or "Internally Disbursed" (shown on the profile page) to your Research Finance Administrator. Your can find your Research Finance Administrator at http://www.ucl.ac.uk/finance/research/post_award/post_award_contacts.php by entering your department
Please report any queries concerning the student data shown on the profile page to:

Email: portico-services@ucl.ac.uk

Help Desk: http://www.ucl.ac.uk/ras/portico/helpdesk
Publication Detail
Levels of emotional awareness and autism: an fMRI study
Abstract
Autism is associated with an inability to identify and distinguish one’s own feelings. We assessed this inability using alexithymia and empathy questionnaires, and used fMRI to investigate brain activity while introspecting on emotion. Individuals with High Functioning Autism/Asperger Syndrome (HFA/AS) were compared with matched controls. Participants rated stimuli from the International Affective Picture System twice, once according to the degree of un/pleasantness that the pictures induced, and once according to their color-balance . The groups differed significantly on both alexithymia and empathy questionnaires. Alexithymia and lack of empathy were correlated, indicating a link between understanding one’s own and others’ emotions. For both groups a strong relationship between questionnaire scores and brain activity was found in the anterior insula (AI), when participants were required to assess their feelings to unpleasant pictures. Regardless of self-reported degree of emotional awareness, individuals with HFA/AS differed from controls when required to introspect on their feelings by showing reduced activation in self-reflection/mentalizing regions. Thus, we conclude that difficulties in emotional awareness are related to hypoactivity in AI in both individuals with HFA/AS and controls, and that the particular difficulties in emotional awareness in individuals with HFA/AS are not related to their impairments in self-reflection/mentalizing
Publication data is maintained in RPS. Visit https://rps.ucl.ac.uk
 More search options
UCL Researchers
Author
UCL Queen Square Institute of Neurology
Author
Institute of Cognitive Neuroscience
University College London - Gower Street - London - WC1E 6BT Tel:+44 (0)20 7679 2000

© UCL 1999–2011

Search by