ASD Comorbidity in Fragile X Syndrome: Symptom Profile and Predictors of Symptom Severity in Adolescent and Young Adult Males

J Autism Dev Disord. 2019 Mar;49(3):960-977. doi: 10.1007/s10803-018-3796-2.


Many males with FXS meet criteria for ASD. This study was designed to (1) describe ASD symptoms in adolescent and young adult males with FXS (n = 44) and (2) evaluate the contributions to ASD severity of cognitive, language, and psychiatric factors, as well as FMRP (the protein deficient in FXS). A few ASD symptoms on the ADOS-2 were universal in the sample. There was less impairment in restricted and repetitive behaviors (RRB) than in the social affective (SA) domain. The best predictor of overall ASD severity and SA severity was expressive syntactic ability. RRB severity was best predicted by the psychiatric factors. Implications for clinical practice and for understanding the ASD comorbidity in FXS are discussed.

Keywords: Autism spectrum disorder; FMRP; Fragile X syndrome; IQ; Language; Psychiatric symptoms.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Autism Spectrum Disorder / diagnosis*
  • Autism Spectrum Disorder / epidemiology*
  • Autism Spectrum Disorder / psychology
  • Comorbidity
  • Fragile X Syndrome / diagnosis*
  • Fragile X Syndrome / epidemiology*
  • Fragile X Syndrome / psychology
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Predictive Value of Tests
  • Severity of Illness Index*
  • Young Adult