Poorer Movement Skills at Seven Months in Children at Risk of Autism, Study Finds
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[Source: Science Daily]
Poorer movement skills detected as early as 7 months old are observed in children at a higher risk of developing Autistic Spectrum Disorder (ASD) than children in the general population. These are the findings of a study being presented on 7th September 2011 at the British Psychological Society’s Developmental Section Conference in Newcastle.
The study was carried out by a team led by Dr. Elisabeth Hill at Goldsmiths (University of London), Dr. Hayley Leonard (Goldsmiths) and the British Autism Study of Infant Siblings (BASIS) based at Birkbeck University of London. The researchers examined infants with a diagnosed older sibling with ASD. Siblings are known to share a higher risk of developing the disorder.
The researchers assessed the infants using a longitudinal follow-up design at 7, 14, and 24 months. Two groups of infants participated in the study: (1) 54 infants at-risk of a diagnosis of ASD based on a sibling diagnosis and (2) 50 low-risk infants without a diagnosed sibling. The infants were assessed on a range of standardised measures of motor skills. Parent reports were also documented.
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