Early Intervention

Blinking Could Detect Autism

Source: 
SFARI
Date Published: 
May 21, 2010
Abstract: 

The researchers tracked eye movements and blinks in 41 2-year-olds with autism and 52 healthy controls while the children watched a short movie of two toddlers on a playground. Both groups on average blinked about five times per minute. But they differed significantly in how their blinking lined up with the content of the movie.

Healthy toddlers refrained from blinking as they watched scenes with high emotional content, such as when the toddler-actors fought about a toy. Toddlers with autism, in contrast, were just as likely to blink during emotional scenes as during dull ones.

Kids with Autism Not Helped by Parent Training Alone

Source: 
Web MD
Date Published: 
May 20, 2010
Abstract: 

Training parents to adapt communication to their child's impairments doesn't affect the child's autism but does help the parent-child relationship, U.K. researchers find. The idea was that training parents to respond to their child's specific communication needs would jump-start the child's social development and improve the child's general communication skills.

Newborn Infants Learn While Asleep; Study May Lead To Later Disability Tests

Source: 
Medical News Today
Date Published: 
May 19, 2010
Abstract: 

Sleeping newborns are better learners than thought, says a University of Florida researcher about a study that is the first of its type. The study could lead to identifying those at risk for developmental disorders such as autism and dyslexia.

IntegraGen Announces Publication of Four Genetic Variants in Autism

Source: 
Medical News Today
Date Published: 
May 14, 2010
Abstract: 

IntegraGen SA, a French biotechnology company dedicated to gene discovery, announced today the publication of the results of a collaborative study reporting the use of a combined analysis of multiple genetic variants in a genetic score to help identify individuals at high risk of developing autism.

How, When Child Develops Autism May Determine Outcome

Source: 
US News & World Report
Date Published: 
April 23, 2010
Abstract: 

Children with autism whose social and communications skills regress around age 3 tend to have more severe autism than children who show signs of the neurodevelopmental disorder at younger ages, new research finds.

Autism Outcomes Linked to Onset

Source: 
PsychCentral
Date Published: 
April 21, 2010
Abstract: 

A new study by the Kennedy Krieger Institute suggests that the long-term outcome of autism disorders is linked to when and how symptoms first appear. Surprisingly, researchers discovered children with early developmental warning signs may actually be at lower risk for poor outcomes than children with less delayed early development who experience a loss or plateau in skills.

Intensive Treatment Found To Be Highly Effective

Source: 
Newswise
Date Published: 
April 6, 2010
Abstract: 

Results of a randomized clinical trial found an innovative multi-component summer social development program to be effective in improving the social performance of children with high-functioning autism spectrum disorders.

Music Training Enhances Brainstem Activity to Speech Sounds

Source: 
Science Daily
Date Published: 
February 22, 2010
Abstract: 

At a Feb. 20 press briefing held during the American Association for the Advancement of Science annual meeting, a Northwestern University neuroscientist argued that music training has profound effects that shape the sensory system and should be a mainstay of K-12 education. Kraus presented her own research and the research of other neuroscientists suggesting music education can be an effective strategy in helping typically developing children as well as children with developmental dyslexia or autism more accurately encode speech.

Autism's Earliest Symptoms Not Evident in Children Under 6 Months

Source: 
Science Daily
Date Published: 
February 16, 2010
Abstract: 

A study of the development of autism in infants, comparing the behavior of the siblings of children diagnosed with autism to that of babies developing normally, has found that the nascent symptoms of the condition -- a lack of shared eye contact, smiling and communicative babbling -- are not present at 6 months, but emerge gradually and only become apparent during the latter part of the first year of life.

Cartoon Trains Teach Autistic Children About Emotions

Source: 
The Sydney Morning Herald
Date Published: 
January 7, 2010
Abstract: 

Putting a human face on a cartoon train, bus or tram proved to help children with autism understand emotions. The head of the University of Cambridge's Autism Research Centre, Simon Baron-Cohen, conducted a study using a series of 15 animated stories called The Transporters. Each episode focused on a different emotion - from simple ones such as happy, sad and angry to more complex emotions such as sorry, ashamed, tired and joking. The findings showed children with autism spectrum conditions had improved emotion recognition after watching the 3D program for 15 minutes a day over a month.