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Exploring brain functions in autism spectrum disorder : a systematic review on functional near-infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS) studies

Fen Zhang (UGent) and Herbert Roeyers (UGent)
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Abstract
A growing body of research has investigated the functional development of the brain in autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Functional near-infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS) is increasingly being used in this respect. This method has several advantages over other functional neuroimaging techniques in studying brain functions in ASD, including portability, low cost, and availability in naturalistic settings. This article reviews thirty empirical studies, published in the past decade, that used fNIRS in individuals with ASD or in infants with a high risk of developing ASD. These studies investigated either brain activation using multiple tasks (e.g., face processing, joint attention and working memory) or functional organization under a resting-state condition in ASD. The majority of these studies reported atypical brain activation in the prefrontal cortex, inferior frontal gyrus, middle and superior temporal gyrus. Some studies revealed altered functional connectivity, suggesting an inefficient information transfer between brain regions in ASD. Overall, the findings suggest that fNIRS is a promising tool to explore neurodevelopment in ASD from an early age.
Keywords
PREFRONTAL ACTIVATION, MENTAL STATE, CHILDREN, CONNECTIVITY, ATTENTION, NETWORK, REGIONS, RISK, REGISTRATION, METAANALYSIS, Autism spectrum disorder, Functional near-infrared spectroscopy, fNIRS, Neurodevelopmental disorders, Brain development

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Citation

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Chicago
Zhang, Fen, and Herbert Roeyers. 2019. “Exploring Brain Functions in Autism Spectrum Disorder : a Systematic Review on Functional Near-infrared Spectroscopy (fNIRS) Studies.” International Journal of Psychophysiology 137: 41–53.
APA
Zhang, Fen, & Roeyers, H. (2019). Exploring brain functions in autism spectrum disorder : a systematic review on functional near-infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS) studies. INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF PSYCHOPHYSIOLOGY, 137, 41–53.
Vancouver
1.
Zhang F, Roeyers H. Exploring brain functions in autism spectrum disorder : a systematic review on functional near-infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS) studies. INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF PSYCHOPHYSIOLOGY. Amsterdam: Elsevier ; 2019;137:41–53.
MLA
Zhang, Fen, and Herbert Roeyers. “Exploring Brain Functions in Autism Spectrum Disorder : a Systematic Review on Functional Near-infrared Spectroscopy (fNIRS) Studies.” INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF PSYCHOPHYSIOLOGY 137 (2019): 41–53. Print.
@article{8617499,
  abstract     = {A growing body of research has investigated the functional development of the brain in autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Functional near-infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS) is increasingly being used in this respect. This method has several advantages over other functional neuroimaging techniques in studying brain functions in ASD, including portability, low cost, and availability in naturalistic settings. This article reviews thirty empirical studies, published in the past decade, that used fNIRS in individuals with ASD or in infants with a high risk of developing ASD. These studies investigated either brain activation using multiple tasks (e.g., face processing, joint attention and working memory) or functional organization under a resting-state condition in ASD. The majority of these studies reported atypical brain activation in the prefrontal cortex, inferior frontal gyrus, middle and superior temporal gyrus. Some studies revealed altered functional connectivity, suggesting an inefficient information transfer between brain regions in ASD. Overall, the findings suggest that fNIRS is a promising tool to explore neurodevelopment in ASD from an early age.},
  author       = {Zhang, Fen and Roeyers, Herbert},
  issn         = {0167-8760},
  journal      = {INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF PSYCHOPHYSIOLOGY},
  keywords     = {PREFRONTAL ACTIVATION,MENTAL STATE,CHILDREN,CONNECTIVITY,ATTENTION,NETWORK,REGIONS,RISK,REGISTRATION,METAANALYSIS,Autism spectrum disorder,Functional near-infrared spectroscopy,fNIRS,Neurodevelopmental disorders,Brain development},
  language     = {eng},
  pages        = {41--53},
  publisher    = {Elsevier },
  title        = {Exploring brain functions in autism spectrum disorder : a systematic review on functional near-infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS) studies},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ijpsycho.2019.01.003},
  volume       = {137},
  year         = {2019},
}

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