Share

Genetics of Autism in Latinx Ancestries

September 2, 2021 - September 2, 2025

While there have been large-scale genetic analyses of autism spectrum disorder, there have been little efforts to investigate this in Hispanics and Latina/Latino populations (henceforth Latinx), the largest minority population in the United States. Inclusion of under-represented populations in genetic studies is important both for scientific reasons and for equity. The genetic architecture of ASD is complex and ongoing efforts to decipher it have focused on both common and rare genetic variants and investigating whether the genetic architecture differs across ancestral populations is important in order to have informed care and risk factors for underrepresented groups.

What are the goals of the study?

The central purpose of this project is to collect genetic and phenotypic information about childhood psychiatric conditions, with the aim of finding links between core symptoms, cognitive ability, and underlying neurobiological mechanisms. To better understand and investigate the genetic risk for autism spectrum disorder (ASD) in people through observation of its genetic architecture across ancestral populations. Specifically, we aim to further our understanding of ASD in Hispanic/Latinx populations, the largest minority population in the U.S. and an admixed population.

What will happen during the visit or online?

Participating in the study typically requires two in-person visits, one for an autism evaluation and one for IQ testing and DNA Collection. The DNA Collection can either be a blood draw or saliva collection; we collect DNA from the person affected with ASD and two biological family members. Furthermore, there is a zoom interview between a clinician and parent for our children participants and online forms that must be filled out. Families will be compensated $100 and will receive a report of the assessments completed.

How will this help families?

Families will be able to receive a report of all assessments done and receive compensation. Receiving an appointment for an autism evaluation and updated reports can often take several months to years, while here it takes a couple of weeks. Our reports can be often used for school or to apply to additional services. Adding on, our coordinator speaks Spanish which can often aid families that don’t speak English and helps remove that barrier to care. Furthermore, this will help families in the future by investigating risk factors in the development of ASD which can help inform clinical care for diverse populations.

Eligibility Criteria

2-50 years old.
A person with suspected/ confirmed ASD and 1-2 family members (preferably parents/full siblings)

View the study flyer here.

Contact Information

Thariana Pichardo – thariana.pichardo@mssm.edu, 212-241-3692

Research Study Website
Seaver Autism Center

More Research studies from this topic: Biological Mechanisms

Autism Biomarkers Consortium for Clinical Trials
In-person participation required
Parents Perceptions of Engagement in Telehealth and In-Person Services (PPE TIPS)
Online web-based study
The Vanderbilt Sound Sensitivity Study – Understanding How the Brain Processes Sounds in Autistic Adults with and without Sound Sensitivity
In-person participation required
Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS)
In-person participation required
Autism and Human-Animal Interaction: A Mixed Method Approach to Emotion Regulation
Online web-based study
Generating Effectiveness Mechanisms in RUBI (GEMs in RUBI)
In-person participation required
Autism-relevant profiles in neurogenetic syndromes
Online web-based study
Language and brain development in baby siblings of children with autism
In-person participation required
Multi-Site Validation Study of Eye Tracking-Based Measure of Autism Symptom Severity
In-person participation required
Intranasal Vasopressin Treatment in Children with Autism
In-person participation required
Adult Autism Spectrum Disorder Study
Online web-based study
A treatment for SETD5 subtype of autism
Online web-based study
LAAMB Study
In-person participation required
Center for Brain Disease Diagnosis at the NRI
Online web-based study In-person participation required
Neural basis of social cognition in youth with ASD and psychosis
In-person participation required
Neurodevelopmental Sleep Study
In-person participation required
San Diego State University Toddler MRI Project
In-person participation required
Autism Home Videos for Children
Online web-based study
Web-based Eyetracking
Online web-based study
Parent Support Program for Parents with a Young Child Recently Diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder
Online web-based study
The Brain Basis of Social Attention in ASD and Intellectual Disability
In-person participation required
Genetic Testing for Autism – The Autistic Adult Perspective
Online web-based study
Autism Intervention Research Network on Behavioral Health
Online web-based study
Simons Searchlight
Online web-based study
LISTEN: Electrophysiological correlates of language processing in minimally verbal children with neurodevelopmental disorders
In-person participation required
The Development of Face-Processing Abilities in Infants: Structural and Functional Brain Changes During the First Year of Life
In-person participation required
The Autism Biomarkers Consortium for Clinical Trials: Confirmation Study
In-person participation required
Predicting and Optimizing Language Outcomes in Minimally Verbal Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (POLO)
In-person participation required
Adolescent Communication of Emotion Study
In-person participation required
Social Motivation
In-person participation required
Pivotal Response Treatment for Children with Autism Spectrum Disorders
In-person participation required
Targeting the neurobiology of restricted and repetitive behaviors in children with autism using N-acetylcysteine: a single-dose challenge study
In-person participation required
COBRA (Connectivity in the Brain and Autism)
In-person participation required
Exploring Positive and Negative Dimensions in Autism Spectrum Disorders (EXPAND)
In-person participation required
MARBLES
In-person participation required
CHARGE
In-person participation required
Imaging Cognition and Neurodevelopment (ICAN)
In-person participation required
Infant-Caregiver Synchrony in Autism
In-person participation required
MRI Study for Prediction of ASD
In-person participation required
Walking and Talking in Autism
In-person participation required
SPARK: Simons Foundation Powering Autism Research for Knowledge
Online web-based study In-person participation required
RARE-X Data Collection Program
Online web-based study
BRIDGE Study (Brain Indicators of Developmental Growth)
In-person participation required
Next Generation Siblings: How Having a Sibling with ASD Affects One’s Decision to Have Children
Online web-based study
Cognitive Functioning in Children
Online web-based study
Infant Brain Imaging Study for Autism
In-person participation required
The Autism Biomarkers Consortium for Clinical Trials: Confirmation Study
In-person participation required
Pubertal, Psychosocial and Physiological Development in Females with Autism
In-person participation required
The True/False Study for Adults on the Autism Spectrum
Online web-based study
Social Dynamics and Early Visual Experiences
In-person participation required
Validation of Autism Diagnostic Interview-3rd Edition (ADI-3)
In-person participation required
Characterizing Electroencephalogram (EEG) Index of Plasticity of the Social Brain in Autism Spectrum Disorder
In-person participation required
Social Cognition in Brain and Behavior
Online web-based study In-person participation required
Sensory Reactivity and Regulation Development
In-person participation required
Sensory Over-Responsivity Propranolol Pilot
In-person participation required
TMS in ASD for Sensory Over-Responsiveness
In-person participation required
Neural Mechanisms of Cognitive Inflexibility in Autism Spectrum Disorder
In-person participation required
The Truth About Others: A Paid Internet Study for Autistic Adults
Online web-based study
The neuroanatomical basis for face processing deficits in autism spectrum disorder
In-person participation required
Language Use in Autism
Online web-based study
Investigating neurocognitive profiles in parents of children with autism and anorexia
Online web-based study