Characterizing daily-life social interactions in adolescents and young adults with neurodevelopmental disorders: a comparison between individuals with Autism Spectrum Disoders and 22q11.2 deletion syndrome

Social impairments are common features of several neurodevelopmental conditions, including 22q11.2 deletion syndrome (22q11DS) and autism spectrum disorders (ASD). However, little is known about social interactions in daily-life. The Ecological Momentary Assessment (EMA) was used to have access to daily-life information and to distinguish the phenomenology of social interactions between the two conditions, often considered as presenting a similar profile of social impairments. 32 individuals with 22q11DS, 26 individuals with ASD and 44 healthy controls (HC) aged 12-30 were recruited. All participants were assessed during 6 days 8 times a day using a mobile app. The EMA protocol assessed positive (PA) and negative (NA) affect, social context (alone versus in company) and the subjective experience of aloneness and social interactions. Participants with 22q11DS and ASD did not spend more time alone, but spent less time with familiar individuals such as friends, and more time with people they live with, compared to HC. However, distinct profiles emerged between the two conditions regarding the subjective experience of aloneness, with more intense feelings of exclusion in participants with ASD compared to participants with 22q11DS and HC. The subjective appreciation of interactions revealed that individuals with ASD felt more judged and more nervous than both 22q11DS and HC. Nevertheless, both conditions expressed a higher desire to be alone when in company of other people than HC. This study highlights distinct social functioning profiles in daily-life in 22q11DS and ASD, giving new intel regarding the social phenotype in these conditions, and pointing towards different therapeutic targets.

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    Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International
Publication date10/05/2021
Retention date08/05/2031
accessLevelPublicAccess levelPublic
duaNoneContract on the use of data
  • Feller, Clémence
  • Ilen, Laura
  • Schneider, Maude
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