Classification of autism spectrum disorder using supervised learning of brain connectivity measures extracted from synchrostates

Wasifa Jamal, Saptarshi Das, Ioana Anastasia Oprescu, Koushik Maharatna, Fabio Apicella, Federico Sicca

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objective. The paper investigates the presence of autism using the functional brain connectivity measures derived from electro-encephalogram (EEG) of children during face perception tasks. Approach. Phase synchronized patterns from 128-channel EEG signals are obtained for typical children and children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). The phase synchronized states or synchrostates temporally switch amongst themselves as an underlying process for the completion of a particular cognitive task. We used 12 subjects in each group (ASD and typical) for analyzing their EEG while processing fearful, happy and neutral faces. The minimal and maximally occurring synchrostates for each subject are chosen for extraction of brain connectivity features, which are used for classi fication between these two groups of subjects. Among different supervised learning techniques, we here explored the discriminant analysis and support vector machine both with polynomial kernels for the classification task. Main results. The leave one out cross-validation of the classification algorithm gives 94.7% accuracy as the best performance with corresponding sensitivity and specificity values as 85.7% and 100% respectively. Significance. The proposed method gives high classi fication accuracies and outperforms other contemporary research results. The effectiveness of the proposed method for classification of autistic and typical children suggests the possibility of using it on a larger population to validate it for clinical practice.

Original languageEnglish
Article number046019
JournalJournal of Neural Engineering
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Aug 1 2014


  • Autism spectrum disorder (ASD)
  • Brain connectivity
  • Classification
  • Complex network
  • Synchrostate

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience
  • Medicine(all)


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