Igelström Lab

Kajsa Igelström, PI at CSAN, stands in front of an aquarium with jellyfish.

Research on sensory processing in autism.

For people who live with autism, sensory experiences can be overwhelming or difficult to understand. We aim to find out why. We collaborate with the autistic community to identify which research questions are most important.

Our group uses neuropsychological tests, virtual reality games and brain imaging to test perception and cognitive function in people with autism or ADHD. Neurodevelopmental Kajsa Igelström works with the scanner.conditions occur when the brain takes a different path in development. Differences in thinking styles and perception may cause many problems but can also offer great strengths. Understanding these individual differences is key to helping people finding ways of living that harness their strengths in the best way possible. We invite participants for various tests that either use a computer screen or a virtual reality headset. Sometimes we measure brain activity with EEG or brain imaging.

Research projects

Multisensory integration on rapid timescales in neurodevelopmental disorders

If two stimuli reach the brain within a certain time window, we are likely to perceive them as originating from the same source. This automatic temporal integration of asynchronous inputs helps us understand the multisensory environment. In neurodevelopmental conditions, this window appears to be longer or shorter than normal. This might cause a failure to attribute e.g. the sound of an object to the corresponding visual impression, making the sensory environment messy and tiring. We study how differences in multisensory temporal integration may be related to sensory processing problems in autism and other neurodevelopmental variations. We use a combination of behavioral testing, virtual reality and brain imaging, focusing especially on time-keeping networks involving the cerebellum.

Kajsa Igelström, forskningsledare vid CSAN.

The research group


Latest publications in LiU DiVA


Angelica P. Ahrens, Tuulia Hyotylainen, Joseph R. Petrone, Kajsa Igelström, Christian D. George, Timothy J. Garrett, Matej Oresic, Eric W. Triplett, Johnny Ludvigsson (2024) Infant microbes and metabolites point to childhood neurodevelopmental disorders Cell, Vol. 187 Continue to DOI
Peter Bang, Danait Kidane Andemichael, Johan Pieslinger, Kajsa Igelström (2024) Sensory symptoms associated with autistic traits and anxiety levels in children aged 6-11 years
Peter Bang, Kajsa Igelström (2024) Relationships between autistic trait dimensions and speech understanding, affective sound intolerance, and general auditory perception


Peter Bang, Kajsa Igelström (2023) Modality-specific associations between sensory differences and autistic traits Autism, Vol. 27, p. 2158-2172 Continue to DOI
Erika Högstedt, Kajsa Igelström, Laura Korhonen, Pia Käcker, Ina Marteinsdottir, Mathilda Björk (2023) 'It's like it is designed to keep me stressed' - Working sustainably with ADHD or autism Scandinavian Journal of Occupational Therapy, Vol. 8, p. 1280-1291 Continue to DOI


In media

Igelström, K. (2018, November). Autism — Vad ryms i en diagnos. Lecture at Hjärndagen, Stockholm, Sweden [in Swedish]

Alpman, M (2018, October). Kamouflagekonstnären. Forskning & Framsteg, 9. [Swedish]

Lundblad, M. (2018, September). "Jag är en person som vill optimera mig själv trots begränsningar, och låter mig vara en lite udda själ på jorden." Tidningen Specialpedagogik, 4. [Swedish]

Lundblad, M. (2018, March). Fördelen med autism. Modern Psykologi, 1, pp. 46–51. [Swedish]

Russo, F. (2018, February). The costs of camouflaging autism. Spectrum News.

Russo, F. (2018, February). The struggles of women who mask their autism. The Atlantic.