Behavioral and Brain Sciences



Short Communication

Understanding the imitation deficit in autism may lead to a more specific model of autism as an empathy disorder


Tony Charman a1
a1 Behavioural and Brain Sciences Unit, Institute of Child Health, London, WC1N 1EH, United Kingdom t.charman@ich.ucl.ac.uk http://www.ich.ucl.ac.uk/ich/html/academicunits/behav_brain_sci/b_b_s_unit.html

Abstract

Preston & de Waal are understandably cautious in applying their model to autism. They emphasise multiple cognitive impairments in autism, including prefrontal-executive, cerebellar-attention, and amygdala-emotion recognition deficits. Further empirical examination of imitation ability in autism may reveal deficits in the neural and cognitive basis of perception-action mapping that have a specific relation to the empathic deficit.



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