Outside Looking In

Outside Looking In

Researchers open new windows on Asperger syndrome and related disorders

By Bruce Bower, 15:55 PM April 15, 2008

In 2003, neuroscientist Matthew K. Belmonte documented the daily lives of a pair of 13-year-old identical twins with an unusual bond. Both twins have Asperger syndrome, a disorder related to autism and characterized by social cluelessness, repetitive behavior, and unusually narrow interests. Intriguingly, one of these intelligent, genetically alike boys displays a much more severe version of Asperger syndrome than the other does.

The twin with the lesser difficulties—call him Brian—can play w...

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