Center for Autism Research Division of Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrics 3535 Market Street, Suite 860
Centers of Emphasis:
Autism Research

Dr. Schultz is the Director of the Center for Autism Research (CAR). CAR's mission is to discover the causes the autism spectrum disorders, including the relationship between genes, brain and behavior. CAR also studies mechanisms that lead to changes in behavior due to successful intervention.

RESEARCH INTERESTS: Autism spectrum disorders (ASD); relationships between genes, brain, behavior and time in ASD and typical development. Behavioral genetics. Developmental neurobiology and psychology of social motivation, social perception and social cognition. Cognitive neuroscience. Innovative treatments for ASD, including computerized gaming and other novel approaches to learning, including combining new medications with behavioral interventions.

RESEARCH METHODS: sMRI, fMRI, DTI, ERP, infra red Eye Tracking; Clinical Phenotyping, Behavioral Genetic approaches; Clinical trials

RESEARCH SUMMARY: I am the Director of the Center for Autism Research (CAR) at the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP). CAR's mission is to find the biological causes of ASD so that we can help create more efficacious treatments.

My lab's research focuses on obtaining large samples of research volunteers with ASD, so that we can examine the relationships between ASD susceptibility genes, endophenotypes (e.g., as measured with MRI, EEG or Eye tracking), clinical phenomenology and development (including response to treatment). Given the heterogeneity of ASD, and the opportunities to collect large samples through CAR, we feel like studying relationships between gene, brain, behavior and time will provide critical insights into the biological causes of ASD.

CAR has studies beginning prenatally in the case of children at risk for ASD due to family history, and other longitudinal studies beginning in the early postnatal period, including longitudinal MRI studies of brain development and precursors to the onset of ASD.

We are also engaged in examining the reliability across time of specific behavioral and biological markers as ASD so that they might be used as treatment targets in future studies. CAR also supports the development of computerized gaming approaches to ASD interventions and we expect to become increasingly involved in randomized clinical trials

Selected Publications
Schultz, R.T., Cho, N.K., Staib, L.H., Kier, L.E., Fletcher, J. M., Shaywitz, S.E., Shankweiler, D.P., Katz, L., Gore, J.C., Duncan, J. S.,& Shaywitz, B. Brain morphology in normal and dyslexic children: The influence of sex and age. Annals of Neurology, 1994: 35, 732-742

Schultz, R.T., Gauthier, I., Klin A., Fulbright, R., Anderson, A., Volkmar, F., Skudlarski, P., Lacadie, C., Cohen, D.J., Gore, J.C. Abnormal ventral temporal cortical activity during face discrimination among individuals with autism and Asperger syndrome. Archives of General Psychiatry, 2000: 57(3), 331-340

Schultz, R.T. Romanski, L., Tsatsanis, K. Neurofunctional Models of Autistic Disorder and Asperger Syndrome: Clues from Neuroimaging. In A. Klin, F.R Volkmar & S.S Sparrow (Eds.) Asperger Syndrome. New York: Plenum Press, 2000, 179-209.

Klin, A, Jones, W., Schultz, R., Volkmar, F., & Cohen, D.J. Visual fixation patterns during viewing of naturalistic social situations as predictors of social competence in individuals with autism. Archives of General Psychiatry, 2002: 59, 809-816.

Schultz, R.T., Grelotti, D.J., Klin, A., Kleinman, J., Van der Gaag, C., Marois, R. & Skudlarski, P. The role of the fusiform face area in social cognition: Implications for the pathobiology of autism. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society, Series B, 2003: 358, 415-427.

Pasley, B.N., Mayes, L.C. & Schultz, R.T. Subcortical discrimination of unperceived objects during binocular rivalry. Neuron, 2004: 42, 163-172.

Schultz, R.T. & Robins, D.L. Functional Neuroimaging Studies of Autism Spectrum Disorders. In F. Volkmar, A. Klin, & R. Paul (Eds), Handbook of autism and pervasive developmental disorders (3rd Edition). New York: John Wiley and Sons, Inc., 2005: 515-533.

Schultz, R.T. Developmental deficits in social perception in autism: The role of the amygdala and fusiform face area. International Journal of Developmental Neuroscience, 2005: 23, 125-141

Vanderwal, T., Hunyadi, E., Grupe, D.W., Connors, C.M., Schultz, R.T. Self, Mother and Abstract Other: an fMRI study of reflective social? processing. NeuroImage. 2008:41 (4), 1437-1446.

Schultz, R.T. Neuroimaging research in Autism: The next decade. Autism Research, 1, 2008:317-319.

Levy, S.E., Mandell, D.S, & Schultz, R.T. Autism. Lancet. 2009: 374 (9701):1627-38

Wang, K., et al. Common genetic variants on 5p14.1 associate with autism spectrum disorders, Nature, 2009: 459(7246):528-33

Glessner, J.T., et al. Autism genome-wide copy number variation reveals ubiquitin and neuronal genes, Nature, 2009:459(7246): 569-73.

Chevallier, C., Kohls, G., Troiani, V., Brodkin, E.S. & Schultz, R.T. The Social Motivation Theory of Autism. Trends in Cognitive Science, 2012, 16(4):231-9. PMID: 22425667

Kohls, G., Chevallier, C., Troiani, V., Schultz, R.T. Social ?wanting? dysfunction in autism: neurobiological underpinnings and treatment implications. Journal of Neurodevelopmental Disorders. 2012, 4(7), 1-20, Epub 2012, June 27.

Tanaka,, JW, Wolf, JM, Klaiman, C, Koenig, K, Cockburn, J, Herlihy, L, Brown, C, Stahl, S, Kaiser, MD, & Schultz, R.T.. Using computerized games to teach face recognition skills to children with autism spectrum disorder: The Let's Face It! program. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry. 2010: 51(8), 944-952. PMID: 20646129

Coutanche, MN, Thompson-Schill, SL and Schultz, R.T. Multi-voxel pattern analysis of fMRI data predicts clinical symptom severity. NeuroImage, 2011: 57(1), 113-123. PMID: 21513803

McPartland, JC, Wu, J., Bailey, CA, Mayes, LC, Schultz, R.T. & Klin, A. Atypical neural specialization for social percepts in autism spectrum disorder. Social Neuroscience, 2011: 6 (5-6) 436-451. PMID: 21777159

Bloy, L., Ingalhalikar, M., Eavani, H., Roberts, T., Schultz, R., Verma, R., HARDI based Pattern Classifiers for the Identification of White Matter Pathologies, Medical Image Computing and Computer Assisted Intervention, 2011;14 (Pt 2):234-41. PMID: 21995034

Herrington, JD, Nymberg, C & Schultz, R.T. Biological Motion Task Performance Predicts Superior Temporal Sulcus Activity. Brain and Cognition, 2011: 77(3):372-81. PMID: 22024246

Bloy, L., Ingalhalikar, M., Eavani, H., Schultz, R.T., Roberts, T.P.L., Verma, R., White Matter Atlas Generation using HARDI based Automated Parcellation. Neuroimage, 2012: 59(4):4055-63PMID: 21893205

Wolff, JJ, Gu, H, Gerig, G, Elison, JT, Gouttard, S, Styner, M Botteron, KN, Collins, L, Dager, SR, Dawson, G, Estes, AM, Evans, A, Hazlett, HC, Kostopoulos, P, McKinstry, RC, Paterson, SJ, Schultz, R.T., Zwaigenbaum, L, Piven, J. for the IBIS Network. Differences in White Matter Fiber Tract Development Present from 6 to 24 Months in Infants with Autism. American Journal of Psychiatry, 2012;169(6):589-60 Feb 17. [Epub ahead of print]

Bloy L, Ingalhalikar, M, Batmanghelich, NK, Schultz, RT, Roberts, TPL, Verma, R. An Integrated Framework for HARDI-based Investigation of Structural Connectivity. Brain Connectivity, 2012 Apr 15. [Epub ahead of print]

Tanaka, J.W., Wolf, J.M. Klaiman, C., Koenig, K., Cockburn, J., Herlihy, L., Brown, C., Stahl, S., South, M., McPartland, J., Kaiser, M.D., & Schultz, R.T. The perception and identification of facial emotions in individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorders using the Let?s Face It! Emotion Skills Battery. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, 2012 Jul 11. [Epub ahead of print]

Hazlett, H.C., Gu, H., McKinstry, R.C, Shaw, D.W.W., Botteron, K.N., Dager, S., Styner, M., Vachet, C., Gerig, G., Paterson, S.J., Schultz, R.T, Estes, A.M., Evans, A.C., & Piven, J. for the IBIS network. Brain volume findings in six month old infants at high familial risk for autism. American Journal of Psychiatry, 2012 Jun;169(6):601-8.

Kohls, G., Schulte-Ruther, M., Nehrkorn, B., Muller, K, Fink, GR, Kamp-Becker, I., Herpertz-Dahlmann, B., Schultz, R.T., Konrad, K. Reward system dysfunction in autism spectrum disorders. Social Cognitive Affective Neuroscience, 2012 Apr 11 [Epub ahead of print]

Herrington, JD, Nymberg, C, Faja, SK, Price, E & Schultz, RT. The Responsiveness of Biological Motion Processing Areas to Selective Attention Towards Goals. Neuroimage., 2012 Oct 15;63(1):581-90. Epub 2012 Jul 14

Gossen, A., Hahn, A., Prinz,S, Westphal, L., Schultz, R.T., Gründer, G., Spreckelmeyer, KN. Oxytocin plasma concentrations after single intranasal oxytocin administration - a study in healthy men. Neuropeptides, 2012 Aug 9. [Epub ahead of print]

Professor of Clinical Psychology in Pediatrics at University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine (2008– present)
Professor of Psychiatry at University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine (2011– present)
PhD, Clinical Psychology, University of Texas at Austin (1991)
BA, Psychology, University of Delaware (1983)
Selected Publications
Herrington, JD, Nymberg, C, Faja, SK, Price, E & Schultz, RT.. The Responsiveness of Biological Motion Processing Areas to Selective Attention Towards Goals.. NeuroImage. Vol 63(1) . 2012 October.
Gossen A, Hahn A, Westphal L, Prinz S, Schultz R T, Gründer G, Spreckelmeyer K N. Oxytocin plasma concentrations after single intranasal oxytocin administration - A study in healthy men.. Neuropeptides. 2012 Aug.
Tanaka James W, Wolf Julie M, Klaiman Cheryl, Koenig Kathleen, Cockburn Jeffrey, Herlihy Lauren, Brown Carla, Stahl Sherin S, South Mikle, McPartland James C, Kaiser Martha D, Schultz Robert T. The perception and identification of facial emotions in individuals with autism spectrum disorders using the Let's Face It! Emotion Skills Battery.. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry. 2012 Jul.
Hazlett Heather Cody, Gu Hongbin, McKinstry Robert C, Shaw Dennis W W, Botteron Kelly N, Dager Stephen R, Styner Martin, Vachet Clement, Gerig Guido, Paterson Sarah J, Schultz Robert T, Estes Annette M, Evans Alan C, Piven Joseph. Brain volume findings in 6-month-old infants at high familial risk for autism.. The American Journal of Psychiatry. Vol 169(6) . 2012 Jun:601-8.
Wolff Jason J, Gu Hongbin, Gerig Guido, Elison Jed T, Styner Martin, Gouttard Sylvain, Botteron Kelly N, Dager Stephen R, Dawson Geraldine, Estes Annette M, Evans Alan C, Hazlett Heather C, Kostopoulos Penelope, McKinstry Robert C, Paterson Sarah J, Schultz Robert T, Zwaigenbaum Lonnie, Piven Joseph. Differences in white matter fiber tract development present from 6 to 24 months in infants with autism.. The American Journal of Psychiatry. Vol 169(6) . 2012 Jun:589-600.
Kohls Gregor, Schulte-Rüther Martin, Nehrkorn Barbara, Müller Kristin, Fink Gereon R, Kamp-Becker Inge, Herpertz-Dahlmann Beate, Schultz Robert T, Konrad Kerstin. Reward system dysfunction in autism spectrum disorders.. Social Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience. 2012 Apr.
Bloy Luke, Ingalhalikar Madhura, Eavani Harini, Schultz Robert T, Roberts Timothy P L, Verma Ragini. White matter atlas generation using HARDI based automated parcellation.. NeuroImage. Vol 59(4) . 2012 Feb:4055-63.
Deriso, DM, Susskind, J , Tanaka, J , Winkielman, P , Herrington, J , Schultz, R, & Bartlett, M.. Exploring the Facial Expression Perception-Production Link Using Real-time Automated Facial Expression Recognition. European Conference on Computer Vision:.Lecture Notes in Computer Science. Vol 7584. 2012.
Bloy Luke, Ingalhalikar Madhura, Batmanghelich Nematollah K, Schultz Robert T, Roberts Timothy P L, Verma Ragini. An integrated framework for high angular resolution diffusion imaging-based investigation of structural connectivity.. Brain Connectivity. Vol 2(2) . 2012:69-79.
Eigsti Inge-Marie, Schuh Jillian, Mencl Einar, Schultz Robert T, Paul Rhea. The neural underpinnings of prosody in autism.. Child Neuropsychology. 2011 Dec.