Adaptation to the speed of biological motion in autism

Themis Karaminis*, Roberto Arrighi, Georgia Forth, David Burr, Elizabeth Pellicano

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    3 Citations (Scopus)
    1 Downloads (Pure)

    Abstract

    Autistic individuals often present atypicalities in adaptation—the continuous recalibration of perceptual systems driven by recent sensory experiences. Here, we examined such atypicalities in human biological motion. We used a dual-task paradigm, including a running-speed discrimination task (‘comparing the speed of two running silhouettes’) and a change-detection task (‘detecting fixation-point shrinkages’) assessing attention. We tested 19 school-age autistic and 19 age- and ability-matched typical participants, also recording eye-movements. The two groups presented comparable speed-discrimination abilities and, unexpectedly, comparable adaptation. Accuracy in the change-detection task and the scatter of eye-fixations around the fixation point were also similar across groups. Yet, the scatter of fixations reliably predicted the magnitude of adaptation, demonstrating the importance of controlling for attention in adaptation studies.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)373-385
    Number of pages13
    JournalJournal of Autism and Developmental Disorders
    Volume50
    Issue number2
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - Feb 2020

    Bibliographical note

    Copyright the Author(s) 2019. Version archived for private and non-commercial use with the permission of the author/s and according to publisher conditions. For further rights please contact the publisher.

    Keywords

    • autism
    • perception
    • adaptation
    • biological motion
    • running speed

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