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Understanding Neurodevelopment in Autism

  • Study HIC#:2000021541
  • Last Updated:07/15/2021

The Program Project Grant (PPG) consists of five inter-related projects. The overarching aim of the PPG is to understand the changes in biological, genetic and functional organization of the brain associated with ASD, and when such changes occur in development (from the fetal and neonatal period through infancy, to 12 years old). The PPG represents a highly innovative and multidisciplinary effort directed toward advancing understanding of early neurodevelopment of children affected by autism using state-of-the-art methodological and analytic approaches. Our scientific premise is that ASD is associated with altered wiring in the brain and that functional connectivity as measured by fMRI can reveal the specific alterations that vary as a function of symptom severity in ASD. Recent discoveries of behavioral, neurophysiological, and neuroimaging and neural markers of ASD in infancy motivate our search for neural signatures of ASD during prenatal and neonatal periods. We plan to investigate two cohorts of younger siblings of children with ASD who, due to familial factors, are at high risk (HR) for developing the disorder: a prospective cohort recruited pre- and perinatally and followed through 24 months, and a cohort of HR siblings who were well-characterized at 24 months through our past studies and will reach the age of 12 years during the life of this grant. These cohorts enable our search for neural signatures of ASD during fetal, neonatal, and school-age periods, as well as to examine the connectome across the spectrum of risk for ASD both in males and females. 

Visit https://medicine.yale.edu/lab/chawarska/ for more information or contact ace@yale.edu.

  • Age18 years and younger
  • GenderBoth
  • Start Date01/16/2018
  • End Date08/31/2022

Trial Purpose and Description

The Program Project Grant (PPG) consists of five inter-related projects. The overarching aim of the PPG is to understand the changes in biological, genetic and functional organization of the brain associated with ASD, and when such changes occur in development (from the fetal and neonatal period through infancy, to 12 years old). The PPG represents a highly innovative and multidisciplinary effort directed toward advancing understanding of early neurodevelopment of children affected by autism using state-of-the-art methodological and analytic approaches. Our scientific premise is that ASD is associated with altered wiring in the brain and that functional connectivity as measured by fMRI can reveal the specific alterations that vary as a function of symptom severity in ASD. Recent discoveries of behavioral, neurophysiological, and neuroimaging and neural markers of ASD in infancy motivate our search for neural signatures of ASD during prenatal and neonatal periods. We plan to investigate two cohorts of younger siblings of children with ASD who, due to familial factors, are at high risk (HR) for developing the disorder: a prospective cohort recruited pre- and perinatally and followed through 24 months, and a cohort of HR siblings who were well-characterized at 24 months through our past studies and will reach the age of 12 years during the life of this grant. These cohorts enable our search for neural signatures of ASD during fetal, neonatal, and school-age periods, as well as to examine the connectome across the spectrum of risk for ASD both in males and females. 

Visit https://medicine.yale.edu/lab/chawarska/ for more information or contact ace@yale.edu.

Eligibility Criteria

1- Gender: a. pregnant mothers who already have one (or more) child(ren) with ASD or one (or more) typically developing child(ren) 

b. newborn male and female siblings of children with or without ASD 

c. school aged male and female siblings of children with or without ASD

2- Minimum Age Limit a. Pregnant mothers beginning at 26 weeks gestation
3- Maximum Age Limit a. School aged, up to 18 years
4- Accepts Healthy Volunteers – yes, “typically developing”
5- Eligibility Criteria a. Affected (with ASD) siblings of children with ASD b. Non-affected (without ASD) siblings of children with ASD c. Non-affected (without ASD) siblings of children without ASD (typically developing controls)

Principal Investigator

Sub-Investigators

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