Project Detail
Interagency Autism Coordinating Committee (IACC) logo
Office of Autism Research Coordination (OARC) logo

Quantitative analysis of craniofacial dysmorphology in autism  

Craniofacial anomalies could plausibly be prevalent among people with a brain-based disorder because of the shared developmental heritage of face and brain. The brain, head, and face form from common embryonic areas and are shaped by shared developmental mechanisms, so a genetic or environmental insult that disrupts early development could affect both brain and craniofacial formation. Dr. Deutsch and colleagues will use a two-pronged approach to ascertain the relationship between craniofacial anomalies and autism. First, with a technique called stereophotogrammetric imaging, the researchers will capture a three-dimensional image of a participant's face and head and then use computer software to obtain detailed measurements. The researchers will then compare measurements recorded from people with autism with those previously documented from the general population, to analyze how far the former deviate from the norm. The team will focus on combinations of anomalies, such as those with similar embryonic origins, and they will determine whether the occurrence of these biologically interpretable combinations is associated with behavioral phenotypes and specific genetic variations. The researchers will also look for clusters of craniofacial anomalies that could help distinguish among subtypes of autism. Project Status


Funder Simons Foundation
Fiscal Year Funding $68,688.00
Project Number 137390
Principal Investigator Deutsch, Curtis
Received ARRA Funding? No
Strategic Plan Question Question 1: When Should I Be Concerned? (Diagnosis)
Strategic Plan Objective Green dot: Objective has greater than or equal to the recommended funding. 1SA. Develop, with existing tools, at least one efficient diagnostic instrument (e.g., briefer, less time intensive) that is valid in diverse populations for use in large-scale studies by 2011. IACC Recommended Budget: $5,300,000 over 2 years.
Federal or Private? Private
Institution University of Massachusetts Medical School
State/Country Massachusetts
Web Link 1 Quantitative analysis of craniofacial dysmorphology in autism (External web link)
Web Link 2 No URL available.
Web Link 3 No URL available.
History/Related Projects Quantitative analysis of craniofacial dysmorphology in autism | $137,860.50 | 2010 | 137390
Quantitative analysis of craniofacial dysmorphology in autism | $69,172.50 | 2011 | 137390