DSM-5 and autism spectrum disorders (ASDs): an opportunity for identifying ASD subtypes

Grzadzinski, Rebecca L.; Huerta, Marisela; Lord, Catherine

The heterogeneous clinical presentations of individuals with autism spectrum disorders (ASDs) poses a significant challenge for sample characterization and limits the interpretability and replicability of research studies. The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, 5th edition (DSM-5) diagnostic criteria for ASD, with its dimensional approach, may be a useful framework to increase the homogeneity of research samples. In this review, we summarize the revisions to the diagnostic criteria for ASD, briefly highlight the literature supporting these changes, and illustrate how DSM-5 can improve sample characterization and provide opportunities for researchers to identify possible subtypes within ASD.


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Molecular Autism

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September 9, 2014