IntroductionAutism spectrum disorder (ASD) is a neurodevelopmental disorder characterized by the expression of social communication deficits and repetitive behaviors with restricted interests (RRBs) [Masi, DeMayo, Glozier, & Guastella, ]. RRBs include stereotyped movements and an insistence on sameness to a rule [Goldman et al., ; Lam & Aman, ]. Insistence on sameness can manifest as an inability to modulate action or thought patterns based on situational demands and is often described as behavioral inflexibility [Geurts, Corbett, & Solomon, ]. Presently, there are no FDA‐approved treatments for RRBs. This is particularly troubling because RRBs can be the most distressing feature of ASD to family members [Bishop, Richler, Cain, & Lord, ].A better understanding of the neuropathophysiology of RRBs can give insight into the development for effective treatments. Several studies indicate that alterations in cortico‐striatal‐thalamic‐cortical activity are related to RRBs [D'Cruz, Mosconi, Ragozzino, Cook, & Sweeney, ; Delmonte, Gallagher, O'hanlon, McGrath, & Balsters, ; Schuetze et al., ]. Other findings indicate that either striatal volume [Hollander et al., ] and striatal growth rate [Langen et al., ] in ASD are correlated with RRB severity. Preclinical experiments have identified specific striatal circuits that are dysregulated and may contribute to various RRBs. Direct
Autism Research – Wiley
Published: Jan 1, 2018
Keywords: ; ; ; ;
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