Developmental pathways to autism: A review of prospective studies of infants at risk

Jones, Emily J H, Gliga, Teodora, Bedford, Rachael, Charman, Tony and Johnson, Mark H (2014) Developmental pathways to autism: A review of prospective studies of infants at risk. Neuroscience and Biobehavioral Reviews, 39. pp. 1-33. ISSN 0149-7634

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Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASDs) are neurodevelopmental disorders characterized by impairments in social interaction and communication, and the presence of restrictive and repetitive behaviors. Symptoms of ASD likely emerge from a complex interaction between pre-existing neurodevelopmental vulnerabilities and the child's environment, modified by compensatory skills and protective factors. Prospective studies of infants at high familial risk for ASD (who have an older sibling with a diagnosis) are beginning to characterize these developmental pathways to the emergence of clinical symptoms. Here, we review the range of behavioral and neurocognitive markers for later ASD that have been identified in high-risk infants in the first years of life. We discuss theoretical implications of emerging patterns, and identify key directions for future work, including potential resolutions to several methodological challenges for the field. Mapping how ASD unfolds from birth is critical to our understanding of the developmental mechanisms underlying this disorder. A more nuanced understanding of developmental pathways to ASD will help us not only to identify children who need early intervention, but also to improve the range of interventions available to them.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: Copyright © 2014 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.
Uncontrolled Keywords: diagnosis,pathology,child development,family health,humans,infant,prospective studies,risk factors
Depositing User: LivePure Connector
Date Deposited: 09 Oct 2018 14:30
Last Modified: 22 Oct 2022 04:10
DOI: 10.1016/j.neubiorev.2013.12.001

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