Eye Movement Abnormality Suggestive of a Spatial Working Memory Deficit Is Present in Parents of Autistic Probands

Dianne L. Koczat, Sally J Rogers, Bruce F. Pennington, Randal G. Ross

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

31 Scopus citations

Abstract

Autistic probands exhibit impaired spatial accuracy and impaired response suppression errors during a delayed oculomotor response task. Family members of autistic probands, and thus the possible familial nature of these deficits, have not been assessed. Eleven parents of autistic probands and 17 adults from unaffected families, ages 25-50 years, completed oculomotor delayed-response tasks. Parents of autistic probands demonstrated poorer spatial accuracy than the comparison group (p = .002), with no significant differences between groups on percentage of premature saccades or latency of remembered saccades. Spatial working memory deficits, as measured by the delayed oculomotor response task, appear to be familial in families with an autistic proband. These deficits deserve further evaluation as a potential endophenotypic marker for genetic risk for autism.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)513-518
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Autism and Developmental Disorders
Volume32
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 2002
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Autism
  • Endophenotype
  • Saccade

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychology(all)
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology

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