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Facial emotion processing in genetic neurodevelopmental syndromes (a literature review) and acquired brain injury (an empirical study)

Welham, Alice (2013)
Clin.Psy.D. thesis, University of Birmingham.

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This volume is in two parts.

The literature review asks what we know of facial emotion processing in genetic neurodevelopmental syndromes associated with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD). Of the five syndromes most frequently associated with ASD in the literature, empirical investigations of facial emotion processing were found for two: Fragile X Syndrome (FXS) and Down's Syndrome (DS). People with DS may be impaired on tasks involving the recognition of facial emotions. People with FXS demonstrate atypicalities when processing facial emotion, such as possible autonomic differences. Implications for the association with ASD are considered.

In the empirical paper, recognition of facial "threat" emotions (fear, anger and disgust) was assessed in chronic neurological patients with anatomically diverse, stable brain lesions. They were found to perform more poorly than a group of age-matched healthy participants. For the patient group, we then used voxel-based morphometry (VBM) to assess in an unbiased fashion the relationship between accuracy of recognition of fear, anger and disgust (individually and then together) and the integrity of grey matter across the whole brain. There was evidence of brain regions in which damage correlated with reduced emotion recognition ability for the three emotions individually, and also for accuracy combined across the three emotions.

Type of Work:Clin.Psy.D. thesis.
Supervisor(s):Rotshtein, Pia and Humphreys, Glyn W. and Jones, Christopher
School/Faculty:Colleges (2008 onwards) > College of Life & Environmental Sciences
Department:School of Psychology
Subjects:BF Psychology
Institution:University of Birmingham
ID Code:4201
This unpublished thesis/dissertation is copyright of the author and/or third parties. The intellectual property rights of the author or third parties in respect of this work are as defined by The Copyright Designs and Patents Act 1988 or as modified by any successor legislation. Any use made of information contained in this thesis/dissertation must be in accordance with that legislation and must be properly acknowledged. Further distribution or reproduction in any format is prohibited without the permission of the copyright holder.
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