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A striking reduction of simple loudness adaptation in autism

Lawson, RP; Aylward, J; White, S; Rees, G; (2015) A striking reduction of simple loudness adaptation in autism. Scientific Reports , 5 , Article 16157. 10.1038/srep16157. Green open access

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Abstract

Reports of sensory disturbance, such as loudness sensitivity or sound intolerance, are ubiquitous in Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) but a mechanistic explanation for these perceptual differences is lacking. Here we tested adaptation to loudness, a process that regulates incoming sensory input, in adults with ASD and matched controls. Simple loudness adaptation (SLA) is a fundamental adaptive process that reduces the subjective loudness of quiet steady-state sounds in the environment over time, whereas induced loudness adaptation (ILA) is a means of generating a reduction in the perceived volume of louder sounds. ASD participants showed a striking reduction in magnitude and rate of SLA relative to age and ability-matched typical adults, but in contrast ILA remained intact. Furthermore, rate of SLA predicted sensory sensitivity coping strategies in the ASD group. These results provide the first evidence that compromised neural mechanisms governing fundamental adaptive processes might account for sound sensitivity in ASD.

Type: Article
Title: A striking reduction of simple loudness adaptation in autism
Location: England
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1038/srep16157
Publisher version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/srep16157
Language: English
Additional information: This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article’s Creative Commons license, unless indicated otherwise in the credit line; if the material is not included under the Creative Commons license, users will need to obtain permission from the license holder to reproduce the material. To view a copy of this license, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > Div of Psychology and Lang Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > Div of Psychology and Lang Sciences > Institute of Cognitive Neuroscience
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Life Sciences
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1476087
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