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Interagency Autism Coordinating Committee (IACC)
Autism Research Database
Office of Autism Research Coordination (OARC)
 
Project Element Element Description

Project Title

Project Title

A functional near-infrared spectroscopy study of first signs of autism

Principal Investigator

Principal Investigator

Barnea-Goraly, Naama

Description

Description

The diagnosis of autism spectrum disorders is currently based on behavioral observations. As a result, many children with autism are not diagnosed until after their third birthday. This delay in diagnosis can be detrimental, as earlier interventions can significantly improve cognition, adaptive behavior and symptoms. Naama Barnea-Goraly and her colleagues at Stanford University in California are seeking a better understanding of brain function in children when they show the first signs of autism, with the goal of identifying biomarkers that could facilitate early diagnosis and treatment. In addition, objective biomarkers for autism spectrum disorders may serve as tools for predicting the severity of symptoms. Barnea-Goraly plans to use functional near-infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS), an optical brain-imaging technique, to investigate brain function in toddlers at risk for autism. fNIRS has several advantages over other imaging modalities, including safety, lower cost and lower sensitivity to movement, which is useful in studies of infants and toddlers. The researchers plan to use the Modified Checklist for Autism in Toddlers to identify children at 15-20 months of age who show early signs of autism. This checklist screens for symptoms in toddlers who may later develop autism spectrum disorders, language disorders or developmental delay. Barnea-Goraly and her team aim to determine whether neural activity at 18-24 months of age can be used to predict a diagnosis of autism by age 3. They may also investigate whether brain activity at this young age correlates with severity of symptoms later in life.

Funder

Funder

Simons Foundation

Fiscal Year Funding

Fiscal Year Funding

61232

Current Award Period

Current Award Period

2013-2015

Strategic Plan Question

Strategic Plan Question

Question 1: When Should I Be Concerned?

Strategic Plan Objective

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, and evaluate whether these risk markers or profiles can improve early identification through heightened developmental monitoring and screening by 2014. IACC Recommended Budget: $33,300,000 over 5 years.

Project Link

Project Link

A functional near-infrared spectroscopy study of first signs of autism (External web link)

Institution

Institution

Stanford University

State/Country

State/Country

California

Project Number

Project Number

274396

Federal or Private?

Federal or Private?

Private

Received ARRA Funding?

Received ARRA Funding?

No

History/Related Projects

History/Related Projects

A functional near-infrared spectroscopy study of first signs of autism | 67573 | 2013 | 274396
A functional near-infrared spectroscopy study of first signs of autism | 128805 | 2014 | 274396

 
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