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Keywords:

  • Autism;
  • Asperger syndrome;
  • classification;
  • etiology;
  • empathy

Abstract— Recent autism and autism-related research from Gothenburg is surveyed. In indigenous families, typical autism seems no more common now than 10 years ago. Genetic factors play a part in causing autism and Asperger syndrome. Certain medical syndromes carry a relatively high risk of concomitant autistic symptoms. Evidence for non-specific brain dysfunction is often found in autism and autistic-like conditions. The search for the underlying clue to the riddle of autism may be futile. Autism might be best conceptualized as a behavioural syndrome reflecting underlying brain dysfunction which shades into other clinical syndromes. A new class of disorders of empathy is proposed.