Special brain activities while mother and autism spectrum disorder child gaze each other

November 15, 2016
The special MEG used in this study can detect electrical activities of the brain of an adult and that of a child.(The child in this picture does not suffer from autism spectrum disorder.) Credit: Kanazawa University

Special activities in the brains while mother and her child with autism spectrum disorder are gazing each other have been discovered by the research team of Kanazawa University together with the research team of Osaka University. The teams used a very special equipment based on magnetoencephalography (MEG) to make three scientifically important discoveries.

  1. Brain activities upon gazing each other are low in the case of with serious autism spectrum disorder.
  2. While the activities in child's with are low, the activities in mother's brain are also low.
  3. When mother makes a movement such as nodding in response to her child, the activities in mother's brain are high.

This study was able to be performed thanks to the equipment development. MEG can detect electrical activities of the brain in a non-invasive and hence non-harmful manner, by the utilization of superconducting sensor technology, with very high time and space resolutions. The researchers have developed an MEG for a child (only one copy in Japan). Furthermore, a very special equipment has been constructed, based on the MEG for a child as above, which can be used for an adult and a child simultaneously, the equipment available only in Kanazawa in the world.

While a parent and a child are gazing each other, enormous amounts of social information are exchanged in an unconscious manner. That is, reading of the face allows new emotion to emerge, which appears on your own face and affects the other; these interactions continue without cease. Bidirectional interactions are thought to play important roles in the development of child's sociality.

Simultaneous measurements of while mother and child are gazing each other by the current study are expected to be a big step to elucidation of development of child's social brain.

The article describing the research results was published online in Scientific Reports, an American journal, on Oct. 10, 2016.

Explore further: Researchers find link between maternal satisfaction and involvement of autistic children in daily activities

More information: Chiaki Hasegawa et al, Mu rhythm suppression reflects mother-child face-to-face interactions: a pilot study with simultaneous MEG recording, Scientific Reports (2016). DOI: 10.1038/srep34977

Related Stories

Researchers find link between maternal satisfaction and involvement of autistic children in daily activities

February 16, 2016
Mothers of children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) often experience stress and suffer from sleep deprivation. Sacrifices almost always follow as they abandon professional careers and personal ambitions, believing that ...

Number games with preschoolers count for little, study suggests

October 27, 2016
New research suggests playing counting games with young children does little to improve their numeracy skills.

Concussion can alter parent-child relationships

April 12, 2016
The incidence of concussion is particularly high in the preschool years - up to around 2% of children aged 0 to 5 years per year. A study by researchers at CHU Sainte-Justine mother-child research hospital (affiliated with ...

Hungary: Baby delivered from brain-dead mother

November 13, 2013
A university hospital in Hungary says a premature but healthy baby was delivered after doctors kept the child's brain-dead mother on life support for three months.

Early treatment sparks striking brain changes in autism

November 6, 2012
When given early treatment, children with autism spectrum disorders (ASD) made significant improvements in behavior, communication, and most strikingly, brain function, Yale School of Medicine researchers report in a new ...

Mothers of children with autism less likely to have taken iron supplements

September 22, 2014
Mothers of children with autism are significantly less likely to report taking iron supplements before and during their pregnancies than the mothers of children who are developing normally, a study by researchers with the ...

Recommended for you

Scientists make autism advance using monkey model

August 21, 2017
Autism is a common neurodevelopmental disorder characterized by impaired social communication and restricted and repetitive behavior or interests. The reported prevalence of autism has been rising worldwide. Due to the application ...

High quality early intervention for children with autism quickly results in costs savings

August 8, 2017
One in every 68 children in the United States has autism spectrum disorder (ASD), a neuro-developmental disorder that results in difficulty socializing and communicating needs and desires, and often is accompanied by restricted ...

Research identifies effects of cognitive behaviour therapy on parents of children with autism

August 1, 2017
Parents of children with autism experience a greater impact from their child's therapy than once thought, according to new research out of York University's Faculty of Health.

People with autism are less surprised by the unexpected

July 31, 2017
Adults with autism may overestimate the volatility of the world around them, finds a new UCL study published in Nature Neuroscience.

Late-breaking mutations may play an important role in autism

July 17, 2017
A study of nearly 6,000 families, combining three genetic sequencing technologies, finds that mutations that occur after conception play an important role in autism. A team led by investigators at Boston Children's Hospital ...

Females with autism show greater difficulty with day-to-day tasks than male counterparts

July 14, 2017
Women and girls with autism may face greater challenges with real world planning, organization and other daily living skills, according to a study published in the journal Autism Research.

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.