US comic Jerry Seinfeld thinks he's on the autism spectrum

Comedians Jimmy Fallon (left) and Jerry Seinfeld (centre) laugh together as they arrive on the red carpet for the taping of the Mark Twain Prize for Humour ceremony and performance, honouring comedian Jay Leno, at the Kennedy Centre in Washington Oct
Comedians Jimmy Fallon (left) and Jerry Seinfeld (centre) laugh together as they arrive on the red carpet for the taping of the Mark Twain Prize for Humour ceremony and performance, honouring comedian Jay Leno, at the Kennedy Centre in Washington Oct 19, 2014. -- PHOTO: REUTERS

LOS ANGELES (AFP) - Veteran US comedian Jerry Seinfeld says he thinks he is on the autism spectrum, describing it as an "alternate mindset."

"I think, on a very drawn-out scale, I think I'm on the spectrum," Seinfeld told NBC's "Nightly News" late Thursday.

The multi-millionaire actor - famous for his semi-autobiographical 1990s sitcom Seinfeld - said he was "never paying attention to the right things."

"Basic social engagement is really a struggle. I'm very literal. When people talk to me and they use expressions, sometimes I don't know what they're saying," Seinfeld explained.

"But I don't see it as dysfunctional. I just think of it as an alternate mindset."

The cause of autism, a complex neurodevelopmental disorder characterised by social withdrawal, is thought to be roughly split between genetic and environmental factors, according to experts.