Regressive autism and defective evolution of cerebral laterality

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


Autism spectrum disorders (ASDs) are the phenotypic manifestation of aneurodevelopmental syndrome, thought to be associated with brain abnormalities. Thispaper focuses on a specific subgroup of these disorders, known as "regressive autism".The aetiology of this disorder is still unclear. It is hypothesized that, in children affectedby regressive autism, the initial normal developmental period is the result of good righthemisphere function, and regressive symptoms could be the result of a failure of theinter-regulation between the two brain hemispheres, leading to an alteration of thephysiological neural networks, and to a blockade (or even loss) of acquired skills.According to the present hypothesis, regressive autism is the final stage of a processbeginning in early stages of development, involving multiple genetic and/orenvironmental mechanisms that control cerebral lateralization, with a failure of thefunctional right to left hemisphere switch. This represents a significant development ofthe original hypothesis by Geschwin and Galaburda (1985a-c), in the light of recentfindings in neuroscience.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationHypotheses in Clinical Medicine
PublisherNova Science Publishers, Inc.
Number of pages8
ISBN (Print)9781622572762
Publication statusPublished - 2013

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)


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