EEG Abnormalities as a Neurophysiological Biomarker of Severity in Autism Spectrum Disorder: A Pilot Cohort Study

Antonio Gennaro Nicotera, Randi Jenssen Hagerman, Maria Vincenza Catania, Serafino Buono, Santo Di Nuovo, Elisa Maria Liprino, Emanuela Stracuzzi, Stefania Giusto, Giuseppina Di Vita, Sebastiano Antonino Musumeci

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


To date, the phenotypic significance of EEG abnormalities in patients with ASD is unclear. In a population affected by ASD we aimed to evaluate: the phenotypic characteristics; the prevalence of EEG abnormalities; the potential correlations between EEG abnormalities and behavioral and cognitive variables. Sixty-nine patients with ASD underwent cognitive or developmental testing, language assessment, and adaptive behavior skills evaluation as well as sleep/wake EEG recording. EEG abnormalities were found in 39.13% of patients. EEG abnormalities correlated with autism severity, hyperactivity, anger outbursts, aggression, negative or destructive behavior, motor stereotypies, intellectual disability, language impairment and self-harm. Our findings confirmed that EEG abnormalities are present in the ASD population and correlate with several associated phenotypic features.

Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Autism and Developmental Disorders
Publication statusPublished - Jan 1 2019



  • Autism spectrum disorder
  • Biomarker
  • Epileptiform abnormalities
  • Hyperactivity
  • Phenotype

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Developmental and Educational Psychology

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