Melisa Carrasco

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Autism spectrum disorders (ASD) impact social functioning and communication, and individuals with these disorders often have restrictive and repetitive behaviors. Accumulating data indicate that ASD is associated with alterations of neural circuitry. Functional MRI (FMRI) studies have focused on connectivity in the context of psychological tasks. However,(More)
Autism spectrum disorders (ASD) are associated with disturbances of neural connectivity. Functional connectivity between neural structures is typically examined within the context of a cognitive task, but also exists in the absence of a task (i.e., "rest"). Connectivity during rest is particularly active in a set of structures called the default network,(More)
BACKGROUND Autism spectrum disorders (ASD) are associated with severe impairments in social functioning. Because faces provide nonverbal cues that support social interactions, many studies of ASD have examined neural structures that process faces, including the amygdala, ventromedial prefrontal cortex and superior and middle temporal gyri. However,(More)
BACKGROUND Autism spectrum disorders (ASD) involve a core deficit in social functioning and impairments in the ability to recognize face emotions. In an emotional faces task designed to constrain group differences in attention, the present study used functional MRI to characterize activation in the amygdala, ventral prefrontal cortex (vPFC), and striatum,(More)
BACKGROUND The pathophysiology of obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) involves increased activity in cortico-striatal circuits connecting the anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) with other brain regions. The error-related negativity (ERN) is a negative deflection in the event-related potential following an erroneous response and is thought to reflect ACC(More)
OBJECTIVE Amygdala habituation, the rapid decrease in amygdala responsiveness to the repeated presentation of stimuli, is fundamental to the nervous system. Habituation is important for maintaining adaptive levels of arousal to predictable social stimuli and decreased habituation is associated with heightened anxiety. Input from the ventromedial prefrontal(More)
A fundamental component of brain development is the formation of large-scale networks across the cortex. One such network, the default network, undergoes a protracted development, displaying weak connectivity in childhood that strengthens in adolescence and becomes most robust in adulthood. Little is known about the genetic contributions to default network(More)
Healthy individuals show robust functional connectivity during rest, which is stronger in adults than in children. Connectivity occurs between the posterior and anterior portions of the default network, a group of structures active in the absence of a task, including the posterior cingulate cortex and the superior frontal gyrus. Previous studies found(More)
OBJECTIVE The error-related negativity (ERN) is a negative deflection in the event-related potential after an incorrect response, which is often increased in patients with obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). However, the relation of the ERN to comorbid tic disorders has not been examined in patients with OCD. This study compared ERN amplitudes in patients(More)
The S and LG alleles of the serotonin transporter-linked polymorphic region (5-HTTLPR) lower serotonin transporter expression. These low-expressing alleles are linked to increased risk for depression and brain activation patterns found in depression (increased amygdala activation and decreased amygdala-prefrontal cortex connectivity). Paradoxically,(More)