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Neural Systems Underlying Social Function in Normal and Pathological Conditions

Tuesday, October 25, 2011 — Concurrent Symposia Session II

10:00 a.m. – Noon

Balcony B


  • Alex Martin, NIMH
  • Bruno Averbeck, NIMH


Systems neuroscience has begun to shed light on the anatomical networks and neuromodulators that underlie developmental disorders of social functioning. In this symposium we will discuss this circuitry and how it goes awry in autism spectrum disorders, schizophrenia, and childhood psychopathy. We will first discuss functional connectivity analyses that are beginning to inform our most complex social processes, including inter-subject synchronization during natural conversation and conscious awareness. We will then turn our attention to clinical disorders, discussing the breakdown of neural connectivity in autism spectrum disorders and its relation to autistic symptoms, and the neural underpinnings of callous and unemotional traits characteristic of childhood psychopathic tendencies and conduct disorders. Finally, we will discuss deficits in emotion perception in schizophrenia, and the ability of oxytocin to ameliorate these deficits. Gaining insight into these neural systems will further our ability to diagnose and ultimately to treat these disorders.

Developmental Synaptic NMDA Receptor Remodeling by Kv4.2 Potassium Channels In Vivo *FARE Award Winner
Eun Young Kim, NICHD

Joint Intention and Common Ground: Imaging Inter-Subject Coherence During Natural Conversation
Nuria Abdulsabur, NIDCD

Slow Cortical Potentials and the Emergence of Consciousness
Biyu He, NINDS

Fractionating the Social Brain in Autism Spectrum Disorders
Stephen Gotts, NIMH

The Neurobiology of Conduct Disorder with Callous and Unemotional Traits
James Blair, NIMH

Emotion Perception and Oxytocin in Schizophrenia
Bruno Averbeck, NIMH

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