EARLY DEVELOPMENT

 

Early identification of developmental disorders such as ASD is central to providing effective early intensive intervention. To address this need, we are working to identify markers in the infancy period that may indicate a child’s risk for developing ASD. Potential candidates include temporal processing of social stimuli, functional neural connectivity, and the development of attention and learning. Characterizing the early developmental trajectory of both brain and behavior in ASD is critical to understanding the process of interactive

specialization that leads to the pattern of symptoms observed in mature individuals.  As a child’s behavior contributes to the environment he or she experiences, identifying delays or risk markers will help us target core symptoms in interventions and improve outcome for children. To meet this goal, we conduct longitudinal studies of infants and children with ASD, and use modeling techniques to explore developmental relationships amongst cognitive, social and neurophysiological domains.