Monday, July 6, 2015

Quantifying naturalistic social gaze in fragile X syndrome using a novel eye tracking paradigm.

Quantifying naturalistic social gaze in fragile X syndrome using a novel eye tracking paradigm.

"....A hallmark behavioral feature of fragile X syndrome (FXS) is the propensity for individuals with the syndrome to exhibit significant impairments in social gaze during interactions with others. ....To improve upon previous studies, we used a customized eye tracking configuration to quantify the social gaze..... Results showed that participants with FXS spent significantly less time looking at the face and had shorter episodes (and longer inter-episodes) of social gaze than controls. Regression analyses indicated that communication ability predicted higher levels of social gaze in individuals with FXS, but not in controls. Conversely, degree of autistic symptoms predicted lower levels of social gaze in controls, but not in individuals with FXS. Taken together, these data indicate that naturalistic social gaze in FXS can be measured objectively using existing eye tracking technology during face-to-face social interactions. Given that impairments in social gaze were specific to FXS, this paradigm could be employed as an objective and ecologically valid outcome measure in ongoing Phase II/Phase III clinical trials of FXS-specific interventions.....


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