The Connectivity Fingerprint of the Fusiform Gyrus Captures the Risk of Developing Autism in Infants with Tuberous Sclerosis Complex

Benoit Scherrer*, Anna K. Prohl, Maxime Taquet, Kush Kapur, Jurriaan M. Peters, Xavier Tomas-Fernandez, Peter E. Davis, Elizabeth M Bebin, Darcy A. Krueger, Hope Northrup, Joyce Y Wu, Mustafa Sahin, Simon K. Warfield

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations

Abstract

Tuberous sclerosis complex (TSC) is a rare genetic disorder characterized by benign tumors throughout the body; it is generally diagnosed early in life and has a high prevalence of autism spectrum disorder (ASD), making it uniquely valuable in studying the early development of autism, before neuropsychiatric symptoms become apparent. One well-documented deficit in ASD is an impairment in face processing. In this work, we assessed whether anatomical connectivity patterns of the fusiform gyrus, a central structure in face processing, capture the risk of developing autism early in life. We longitudinally imaged TSC patients at 1, 2, and 3 years of age with diffusion compartment imaging. We evaluated whether the anatomical connectivity fingerprint of the fusiform gyrus was associated with the risk of developing autism measured by the Autism Observation Scale for Infants (AOSI). Our findings suggest that the fusiform gyrus connectivity captures the risk of developing autism as early as 1 year of age and provides evidence that abnormal fusiform gyrus connectivity increases with age. Moreover, the identified connections that best capture the risk of developing autism involved the fusiform gyrus and limbic and paralimbic regions that were consistent with the ASD phenotype, involving an increased number of left-lateralized structures with increasing age.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2199-2214
Number of pages16
JournalCerebral Cortex
Volume30
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 14 2020
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • autism
  • connectivity fingerprint
  • fusiform gyrus
  • tuberous sclerosis complex

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cognitive Neuroscience
  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience

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