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

Model diagnostic lab for infants at risk for autism  

The researchers aim to understand how babies and toddlers learn about their social surroundings and how this process differs in children with autism. Klin and Jones developed new eye-tracking technologies and data analysis strategies to track and quantify the gaze of babies and toddlers and identify the visual aspects of their environment that they are drawn to most strongly. The researchers propose to use these measures to study the development of social engagement and the derailment of this process in autism. This study will follow babies at a greater genetic risk for autism from birth to 6 months, and then every 3 months until they are 2 years old. More than 6,000 assessments are planned. Their measures will allow them to determine what subjects prefer to look at when viewing naturalistic and dynamic social scenes, follow how their preferential attention changes over time, assess the influence of voices and other sounds on social visual attention, and examine how stimulus properties (motion, contrast, and spatial resolution) of objects determine how much attention they attract. The researchers then plan to look for relationships between these data and the subjects' clinical information and social abilities. Their findings may identify very early manifestations of autism that could serve as diagnostic markers. Project Status


Funder Simons Foundation
Fiscal Year Funding $1,989,795.50
Project Number SF34
Principal Investigator Klin, Ami
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. 1LA. Identify behavioral and biological markers that separately, or in combination, accurately identify, before age 2, one or more subtypes of children at risk for developing ASD by 2014. IACC Recommended Budget: $33,300,000 over 5 years.
Federal or Private? Private
Institution Yale University
State/Country Connecticut
Web Link 1 Model diagnostic lab for infants at risk for autism (External web link)
Web Link 2 No URL available.
Web Link 3 No URL available.
History/Related Projects Model diagnostic lab for infants at risk for autism | $599,991.50 | 2010 | SF34