City Research Online

Investigating emotional impairments in adults with autism spectrum disorders and the broader autism phenotype

Berthoz, S., Lalanne, C., Crane, L. & Hill, E. L. ORCID: 0000-0003-3130-1271 (2013). Investigating emotional impairments in adults with autism spectrum disorders and the broader autism phenotype. Psychiatry Research, 208(3), pp. 257-264. doi: 10.1016/j.psychres.2013.05.014


There is an increasing interest in the socio-affective atypicalities observed in adults with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). The aim of this study was to further explore emotional responsiveness in adults with ASD using well-validated self-reports of alexithymia and extend these with consideration of anhedonia, and to determine whether these features are part of a broader autism phenotype. Thirty-eight adults with ASD, 87 parents of ASD individuals and 47 typical controls completed the Autism Spectrum Quotient, the 20-item Toronto Alexithymia Scale and the Bermond-Vorst Alexithymia Questionnaire, as well as the Chapman Physical and Social Anhedonia Scales. The ASD group differed from controls and parents on most measures, with the exception of physical and social anhedonia, relative to parents. Parents differed from controls on social anhedonia, and a higher proportion of parents were classed as alexithymic, relative to controls. Cluster analysis revealed that some parents share more similarities with ASD participants than with controls. The results suggest that socio-affective impairments are characteristic of ASD, and feature as part of the broader autism phenotype.

Publication Type: Article
Additional Information: © 2013. This manuscript version is made available under the CC-BY-NC-ND 4.0 license
Publisher Keywords: Alexithymia, Social anhedonia, Physical anhedonia, Anxiety, Depression, Psychometrics
Text - Accepted Version
Available under License Creative Commons Attribution Non-commercial No Derivatives.

Download (738kB) | Preview



Downloads per month over past year

View more statistics

Actions (login required)

Admin Login Admin Login