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

Electrophysiological, metabolic and behavioral markers of infants at risk  

Early diagnosis of autism is key to ensuring the best possible outcome for children with the disorder because affected children who start intensive treatments young are known to fare better than those who do not. Dr. Nelson and his colleagues are looking for neural markers of the disorder that could be detected between 6 and 12 months of age, long before more noticeable differences emerge in the children's natural behavior. The study will use sophisticated neuroimaging tools to measure the brain's electric and metabolic activity, along with behavioral assays such as eye tracking. The researchers will use these tools to search for neural differences between high- and low-risk infants. The team will also track the development of language, social and cognitive measures in children from 6 months to 3 years old, to determine which of the markers observable between 6 and 12 months can predict an eventual autism diagnosis at 3 years. Project Status


Funder Simons Foundation
Fiscal Year Funding $92,396.50
Project Number 137186
Principal Investigator Nelson, Charles
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 Children's Hospital Boston
State/Country Massachusetts
Web Link 1 Electrophysiological, metabolic and behavioral markers of infants at risk (External web link)
Web Link 2 No URL available.
Web Link 3 No URL available.
New! History/Related Projects Electrophysiological, metabolic and behavioral markers of infants at risk | $378,750.50 | 2010 | 137186