Profiles of receptive and expressive language abilities in boys with comorbid fragile X syndrome and autism

Andrea McDuffie, Sara Kover, Leonard J Abbeduto, Pamela Lewis, Ted Brown

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

42 Scopus citations


The authors examined receptive and expressive language profiles for a group of verbal male children and adolescents who had fragile X syndrome along with varying degrees of autism symptoms. A categorical approach for assigning autism diagnostic classification, based on the combined use of the Autism Diagnostic Interview - Revised and the Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule (ADOS), and a continuous approach for representing autism symptom severity, based on ADOS severity scores, were used in 2 separate sets of analyses. All analyses controlled for nonverbal IQ and chronological age. Nonverbal IQ accounted for significant variance in all language outcomes with large effect sizes. Results of the categorical analyses failed to reveal an effect of diagnostic group (fragile X syndrome-autism, fragile X syndrome-no autism) on standardized language test performance. Results of the continuous analyses revealed a negative relationship between autism symptom severity and all of the standardized language measures. Implications for representing autism symptoms in fragile X syndrome research are considered.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)18-32
Number of pages15
JournalAmerican Journal on Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2012
Externally publishedYes


  • Autism
  • Fragile X syndrome
  • Language

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology
  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Neuropsychology and Physiological Psychology
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)


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