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Nouchine Hadjikhani, MD, PhD, is a visiting professor at the GNC. She is currently Associate Professor at Harvard Medical School. She has been doing brain research since 1993, and has used neuroanatomy, histology, PET, fMRI, DTI, MEG as well as behavioural methods to study the normal and the diseased brain. Her primary research interest was the visual system, and she started studying this aspect of ASD inspecting the organization of visual cortex as well as face perception. Anatomical and functional studies conducted by her team have evidenced the presence of abnormalities in the so-called “mirror neuron” areas (which enable us to mimic and mentally simulate the emotions, behaviour and movement of others) of young adults with high-functioning autism. Her current work is dedicated to understand the neural bases of the deficits of social instinct in ASD, and to develop neural biomarkers that will help to objectify the effect of therapeutic approaches, both behavioural and pharmacological. Most recently, she demonstrated that affective empathy is preserved in individuals with autism. In her current research she is exploring emotional cognition in autism, together with the influence of gaze in face processing. The publications listed here on this page are related to mental health and neurodevelopment and a full list of Nouchine's publications can be found at Harvard Medical School.

Photo: Russ Gerard



Bader, M., Tannock, R., & Hadjikhani, N. (2018). The Zappel-Philipp a historical example of ADHD Clinics. Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorders, 10, 119-127.

Curie, A., Friocourt, G., des Portes, V., Roy, A., Nazir, T., Brun, A., … Gollub, R.L. (2018). Basal ganglia involvement in ARX patients: The reason for ARX patients very specific grasping? NeuroImage Clinical, 19, 454-465.

Galazka, M.A., Asberg Johnels, J., Zurcher, N. R., Hippolyte, L., Lemonnier, E., Billstedt, E., … Hadjikhani, N. (2018). Pupillary Contagion in Autism. Psychological Science, (Epub ahead of print).

Hadjikhani, N., Asberg Johnels, J., Lassalle, A., Zurcher, N. R., Hippolyte, L., Gillberg, C., … Ben-Ari, Y. (2018). Bumetanide for autism: more eye contact, less amygdala activation. Scientific Reports, 8, 3602.

Lassalle, A., Zurcher, N. R., Hippolyte, L., Billstedt, E., Porro, C. A., Benuzzi, F., … Hadjikhani, N. (2018). Effect of visual stimuli of pain on empathy brain network in people with and without Autism Spectrum Disorder. European Journal of Neuroscience, 48, 2333-2342.

Lassalle, A., Zurcher, N. R., Porro, C. A., Benuzzi, F., Hippolyte, L., Lemonnier, E., . . . Hadjikhani, N. (2018). Influence of anxiety and alexithymia on brain activations associated with the perception of others' pain in autism. Social Neuroscience, (Epub ahead of print).

Martin-Brevet, S., Rodriguez-Herreros, B., Nielsen, J. A., Moreau, C., Modenato, C., Maillard, A. M., … Jacquemont, S. (2018). Quantifying the Effects of 16p11.2 Copy Number Variants on Brain Structure: A Multisite Genetic-First Study. Biological Psychiatry, 84, 253-264.

Orekhova, E.V., Stroganova, T. A., Schneiderman, J.F., Lundstrom, S., Riaz, B., Sarovic, D., … Hadjikhani, N. (2018). Neural gain control measured through cortical gamma oscillations is associated with sensory sensitivity. Human Brain Mapping, (Epub ahead of print).

Orekhova, E.V., Sysoeva, O.V., Schneiderman, J.F., Lundstrom, S., Galuta, I.A., Goiaeva, D. E., … Stroganova, T. A. (2018). Input-dependent modulation of MEG gamma oscillations reflects gain control in the visual cortex. Scientific Reports, 8, 8451.

Zebrowitz, L.A., Boshyan, J., Ward, N., Hanlin, L., Wolf, J.M., & Hadjikhani, N. (2018). Dietary dopamine depletion blunts reward network sensitivity to face trustworthiness. Journal of Psychopharmacology, 32, 965-978.

Zebrowitz, L. A., Ward, N., Boshyan, J., Gutchess, A., & Hadjikhani, N. (2018). Older adults' neural activation in the reward circuit is sensitive to face trustworthiness. Cognitive, Affective & Behavioral Neuroscience, 18, 21-34.


Hadjikhani, N., Zurcher, N., Lassalle, A. Hippolyte, L., Ward, N., & Åsberg Johnels,  J. (2017). The effect of constraining eye-contact during dynamic emotional face perception - an fMRI study. Social Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience, 12, 1197-1207.

Hadjikhani, N., Åsberg Johnels, J., Zürcher, N.R., Lassalle, A., Guillon, Q., Hippolyte, L., ...  Gillberg, C. (2017). Look me in the eyes: constraining gaze in the eye-region provokes abnormally high subcortical activation in autism. Scientific Reports, 7, 3163.

Lassalle, A., Åsberg Johnels, J., Zürcher, N.R., Hippolyte, L., Billstedt, E., Ward, N., ...  Hadjikhani. N. (2017). Hypersensitivity to low intensity fearful faces in autism when fixation is constrained to the eyes. Human Brain Mapping, 38, 5943-5957.

Schmelkin, C., Plessow, F., Thomas, J.J., Gray, E.K., Marengi, D.A., Pulumo, R.,... Lawson, E.A. (2017). Low oxytocin levels are related to alexithymia in anorexia nervosa. International Journal of Eating Disorders, 50, 1332-1338.

Zebrowitz, L.A., Boshyan, J., Ward, N., Gutchess, A., & Hadjikhani, N. (2017). The Older Adult Positivity Effect in Evaluations of Trustworthiness: Emotion Regulation or Cognitive Capacity? PLoS One, 12, e0169823.

Åsberg Johnels, J., Hovey, D., Zürcher, N., Hippolyte, L., Lemonnier, E., Gillberg, C.,  & Hadjikhani, N. (2017). Autism and emotional face-viewing. Autism Research, 10, 901-910.


Curie, A., Brun, A., Cheylus, A., Reboul, A., Nazir, T., Bussy, G. ... des Portes, V. (2016). A Novel Analog Reasoning Paradigm: New Insights in Intellectually Disabled Patients. PLoS One, 11, e0149717.

Guillon, Q., Rogé, B., Afzali, M.H., Baduel, S., Kruck, J., & Hadjikhani, N. (2016). Intact perception but abnormal orientation towards face-like objects in young children with ASD. Scientific Reports, 6, 22119.

Hippolyte, L., Maillard, A.M., Rodriguez-Herreros, B., Pain, A., Martin-Brevet, S., Ferrari, C., ... Jacquemont, S. (2016). The number of genomic copies at the 16p11.2 locus modulates language, verbal memory and inhibition. Biological Psychiatry, 80, 129-139.

Meeren, H.K., Hadjikhani, N., Ahlfors, S.P., Hämäläinen, M.S., & de Gelder, B. (2016). Early Preferential Responses to Fear Stimuli in Human Right Dorsal Visual Stream - A Meg Study. Scientific Reports, 6, 24831.

Zebrowitz, L., Ward, N., Boshyan, J., Gutchess, A., & Hadjikhani, N. (2016). Dedifferentiated face processing in older adults is linked to lower resting state metabolic activity in fusiform face area. Brain Research, 1644, 22-31.


Durrleman, S., Hippolyte, L., Zufferey, S., Iglesias, K., & Hadjikhani, N. (2015). Complex syntax in autism spectrum disorders: a study of relative clauses. International Journal of Language and Communication Disorders, 50, 260-267.

Guillon, Q., Afzali, M.H., Rogé, B., Baduel, S., Kruck, J., & Hadjikhani, N. (2015). The Importance of Networking in Autism Gaze Analysis. PLoS One, 10, e0141191.

Hadjikhani, N., Zürcher, N.R., Rogier, O., Ruest, T., Hippolyte, L., Ben-Ari, Y., & Lemonnier, E. (2015). Improving emotional face perception in autism with diuretic bumetanide: A proof-of-concept behavioral and functional brain imaging pilot study. Autism, 19, 149-157.

Kveraga, K., Boshyan, J., Adams, R.B. Jr, Mote, J., Betz, N., Ward, N., ... Barrett, L.F. (2015). If it bleeds, it leads: separating threat from mere negativity. Social Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience, 10, 28-35.

Kveraga, K., Boshyan, J., Ward, N., Hadjikhani, N., & Adams, R Jr. (2015). Vision for action: saccadic and manual responses to clear threat and ambiguous negative scenes. Journal of Vision, 15, 358.

Maillard, A.M., Ruef, A., Pizzagalli, F., Migliavacca, E., Hippolyte, L., Adaszewski, S., … 16p11 2 European Consortium. (2015). The 16p11.2 locus modulates brain structures common to autism, schizophrenia and obesity. Molecular Psychiatry, 20, 140-147.


Bader, M., & Hadjikhani, N. (2014). The concept of instability: a French perspective on the concept of ADHD. Attention Deficit and Hyperactivity Disorders, 6, 11-17.

Curie, A., Nazir, T., Brun, A., Paulignan, Y., Reboul, A., Delange, K., ... des Portes, V. (2014). The c.429_452 duplication of the ARX gene: a unique developmental-model of limb kinetic apraxia. Orphanet Journal of Rare Diseases, 9, 25.

Fernell, E., Wilson, P., Hadjikhani, N., Bourgeron, T., Neville, B., Taylor, D., ... Gillberg, C. (2014). Screening, intervention and outcome in autism and other developmental disorders: the role of randomized controlled trials. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, 44, 2074-2076.

Guillon, Q., Hadjikhani, N., Baduel, S., & Rogé, B. (2014). Visual social attention in autism spectrum disorder: insights from eye tracking studies. Neuroscience and Biobehavioral Reviews, 42, 279-297.

Guillon, Q., Hadjikhani, N., Baduel, S., Kruck, J., Arnaud, M., & Rogé, B. (2014). Both dog and human faces are explored abnormally by young children with autism spectrum disorders. Neuroreport, 25, 1237-1241.

Guillion, Q., Hadjikhani, N., & Roge, B. (2014). L’utilisation de la technique de suivi du regard dans l’etude des trouble du spectre de l’autisme. L’Information Psychiatrique, 90, 827-834.

Hadjikhani, N. (2014). Deconstructing scientifically some of the myths regarding autism. Swiss Archives of Neurology and Psychiatry, 165, 272-276.

Hadjikhani, N., Zürcher, N.R., Rogier, O., Hippolyte, L., Lemonnier, E., Ruest, T, ... Gillberg, C. (2014). Emotional contagion for pain is intact in autism spectrum disorders. Translational Psychiatry, 4, e343.


Jiang, X., Bollich, A., Cox, P., Hyder, E., James, J., Gowani, S.A., ... Riesenhuber, M. (2013). A quantitative link between face discrimination deficits and neuronal selectivity for faces in autism. NeuroImage: Clinical, 2, 320-331.

Meeren, H.K., de Gelder, B., Ahlfors, S.P., Hämäläinen, M.S., & Hadjikhani, N. (2013). Different Cortical Dynamics in Face and Body Perception: An MEG study. PloS One, 8, e71408.

Zürcher, N.R., Donnelly, N., Rogier, O., Russo, B., Hippolyte, L., Hadwin, J., ... Hadjikhani, N. (2013). It's all in the eyes: subcortical and cortical activation during grotesqueness perception in autism. PloS One, 8, e54313.

Zürcher, N.R., Rogier, O., Boshyan, J., Hippolyte, L., Russo, B., Gillberg, N., ... Hadjikhani, N. (2013). Perception of social cues of danger in autism spectrum disorders. PloS One, 8, e81206.


Adams, R.B. Jr., Franklin, R.G. Jr., Kveraga, K., Ambady, N., Kleck, R.E., Whalen, P., … Nelson A.J. (2012). Amygdala responses to averted vs direct gaze fear vary as a function of presentation speed. Social Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience, 7, 568-577.

Bakhtiari R., Zürcher, N.R., Rogier, O., Russo, B., Hippolyte, L., Granziera, C., … Hadjikhani, N. (2012). Differences in white matter reflect atypical developmental trajectory in autism: A Tract-based Spatial Statistics Study. NeuroImage: Clinical, 1, 48-56.

Lemonnier, E., Degrez, C., Phelep, M., Tyzio, R., Josse, F., Grandgeorge, M., … Ben-Ari, Y. (2012). A randomised controlled trial of bumetanide in the treatment of autism in children. Translational Psychiatry, 11, e202.

Norris, B., Nadel, J., Barker, M., Hadjikhani, N., & Billard, A. (2012). Investigating gaze of children with ASD in naturalistic settings. PLoS One, 7, e44144.

Van den Stock, J., Vandenbulcke, M., Zhu, Q., Hadjikhani, N., & de Gelder, B. (2012). Developmental prosopagnosia in a patient with hypoplasia of the vermis cerebelli. Neurology, 78, 1700-1702.

Van der Zwaag, W., Da Costa, S.E., Zürcher N.R., Adams, R.B. Jr., & Hadjikhani, N. (2012). A 7 tesla FMRI study of amygdala responses to fearful faces. Brain Topography, 25, 125-128.


Donnelly, N., Zürcher, N.R., Cornes, K., Snyder, J., Naik, P., Hadwin, J., & Hadjikhani, N. (2011). Discriminating grotesque from typical faces: evidence from the Thatcher illusion. PLoS One, 6, e23340.

Granziera, C., Hadjikhani, N., Arzy, S., Seeck, M., Meuli, R., & Krueger G.(2011). In-vivo magnetic resonance imaging of the structural core of the Papez circuit in humans. Neuroreport, 22, 227-231.

Jacquemont, S., Curie, A., Des Portes, V., Torrioli, M.G., Berry-Kravis, E., Hagerman, R.J., … Gomez-Mancilla, B. (2011). Epigenetic modification of the FMR1 gene in fragile X syndrome is associated with differential response to the mGluR5 antagonist AFQ056. Science Translational Medicine, 3, 64ra1.


Adams, R.B. Jr., Franklin, R.G. Jr., Rule, N.O., Freeman, J.B., Kveraga, K., Hadjikhani, N., … Ambady, N. (2010). Culture, gaze and the neural processing of fear expressions. Social Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience, 5, 340-348.

Hadjikhani, N. (2010). Serotonin, pregnancy and increased autism prevalence: is there a link? Medical Hypotheses, 74, 880-883.


Hadjikhani, N., Kveraga, K., Naik, P., & Ahlfors, S.P. (2009). Early (N170) activation of face-specific cortex by face-like objects. Neuroreport, 20, 403-407.

Hadjikhani, N., Joseph, R.M., Manoach, D.S., Naik, P., Snyder, J., Dominick, K., … de Gelder, B. (2009). Body expressions of emotion do not trigger fear contagion in autism spectrum disorder. Social Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience, 4, 70-78.


Hadjikhani, N., Hoge, R., Snyder, J., & de Gelder, B. (2008). Pointing with the eyes: the role of gaze in communicating danger. Brain and Cognition, 68, 1-8.

Knaus, T.A., Silver, A.M., Lindgren, K.A, Hadjikhani, N., & Tager-Flusberg, H. (2008). fMRI activation during a language task in adolescents with ASD. Journal of the International Neuropsychological Society, 14, 967-979.

Meeren, H.K., Hadjikhani, N., Ahlfors, S.P., Hämäläinen, M.S., & de Gelder, B. (2008). Early category-specific cortical activation revealed by visual stimulus inversion. PLoS One, 3, e3503.

Thakkar K.N., Polli, F.E., Joseph, R.M., Tuch, D.S., Hadjikhani, N., Barton, J.J., & Manoach, D.S. (2008). Response monitoring, repetitive behaviour and anterior cingulate abnormalities in autism spectrum disorders (ASD). Brain, 131, 2464-2478.


Hadjikhani, N. (2007). Mirror Neuron System and Autism. In P.C. Carlisle, (Ed.), Progress in Autism Research. New York: Nova Science Publishers.

Hadjikhani, N., Joseph, R.M., Snyder, J., & Tager-Flusberg, H. (2007). Abnormal activation of the social brain during face perception in autism. Human Brain Mapping, 28, 441-449.


de Gelder, B., & Hadjikhani, N. (2006). Non-conscious recognition of emotional body language. Neuroreport, 17, 583-586.

Hadjikhani, N., Joseph, R.M., Snyder, J., & Tager-Flusberg, H. (2006). Anatomical differences in mirror neuron system and social cognition network in autism. Cerebral Cortex, 16, 1276-1282.


Hadjikhani, N., Joseph, R.M., Snyder, J., Chabris, C.F., Clark, J., Steele, S., … Tager-Flusberg H. (2004). Activation of the fusiform gyrus when individuals with autism spectrum disorder view faces. NeuroImage, 22, 1141-1150.

Hadjikhani, N., Chabris, C.F., Joseph, R.M., Clark, J., McGrath, L., Aharon, I., … Harris, G.J. (2004). Early visual cortex organization in autism: an fMRI study. Neuroreport, 15, 267-270.


de Gelder, B., Frissen, I., Barton, J., & Hadjikhani, N. (2003). A modulatory role for facial expressions in prosopagnosia. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 100, 13105-13110.


Hadjikhani, N., & de Gelder, B. (2002). Neural basis of prosopagnosia: an fMRI study. Human Brain Mapping, 16, 176-182.















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Nouchine Hadjikhani

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