Taste identification in adults with autism spectrum conditions

J Autism Dev Disord. 2012 Jul;42(7):1419-24. doi: 10.1007/s10803-011-1377-8.


Sensory issues are widely reported in Autism Spectrum Conditions (ASC). Since taste perception is one of the least studied senses in ASC we explored taste identification in adults with ASC (12 males, 11 females) compared to control participants (14 males, 12 females). 'Taste strips' were used to measure taste identification overall, as well as bitter, sour, sweet and salty tastes. Results revealed lower taste scores overall in the ASC group, as well as for bitter, sour and sweet tastes. Salty taste scores did not differ between the groups. Examining error types showed that adults with ASC more often misidentified a taste as salty or as no taste. Future studies should investigate underlying mechanisms of taste identification difficulties in ASC.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Child
  • Child Development Disorders, Pervasive / diagnosis*
  • Child Development Disorders, Pervasive / psychology*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Perceptual Disorders / diagnosis*
  • Perceptual Disorders / psychology*
  • Reference Values
  • Taste Threshold
  • Taste*