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The International Meeting for Autism Research (IMFAR)
Date:5/14/2014

ide, is particularly inspiring."

"I can't think of a more dynamic area of scientific endeavor than the field of autism research, which, as this meeting demonstrates, has attracted many of the most impressive scientific minds to the cause of helping people with autism, including some impressive, young researchers," said Joseph Piven, MD, co-chair of the IMFAR Scientific Program Committee. "IMFAR provides a critical opportunity for dialogue and fosters a spirit of collaboration among the full array of scientists focused on ASD research."

A press conference was held on May 14 focusing on notable research at IMFAR. The following studies were featured:

A first glimpse of the developmental profile of sibling resilience: 2-24 months eye tracking-based developmental trajectories of eye fixation -- W. Jones and A. Klin, Marcus Autism Center, Children's Healthcare of Atlanta and Emory University School of Medicine.

Among the younger siblings of children with autism spectrum disorders (ASD), 1 in 5 also develops ASD and another 1 in 5 displays some vulnerabilities associated with ASD without presenting with the whole condition (this is often called the "Broader Autism Phenotype", or BAP). In a recent study published in Nature, we showed that ongoing decline in eye fixation looking at another person's eyes in the first 6 months of life predicted the diagnosis of ASD at the age of 24 and 36 months. Also, decline in eye fixation in the first 12 months of life predicted the child's level of disability at the age of 24 and 36 months. In this study, we show that the trajectory of eye fixation in the first 24 months of life in unaffected siblings is virtually identical to that of typically developing babies. However, the trajectory of eye fixation for the children characterized as "BAP" begins very similarly as in children with ASD declining from about the age of 2 months but there is a "course correction" i.e., increase in eye fixatio
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Contact: Adam Pockriss
apockriss@rubenstein.com
212-843-8286
Rubenstein Associates, Inc.
Source:Eurekalert

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