Friday, August 25, 2017

Parents’ interactions with infants may alleviate autism features

Teaching parents to respond to cues from babies at high risk of autism eases the severity of autism features at age 3, a new study suggests1.

The research is a follow-up to a 2015 study that showed that a parent-delivered behavioral therapy decreased autism signs in their high-risk babies at age 15 months2. The new study suggests these gains persist for months to years.

“We seem to have a sustained effect on reducing symptoms,” says lead researcher Jonathan Green, professor of child and adolescent psychiatry at the University of Manchester in the United Kingdom.
“It suggests we’ve done something in the mechanics of the development of the child to change it.”

The 2015 study involved 28 babies who have an older sibling with autism. These so-called ‘baby sibs’ are 20 times more likely than a typical child to be diagnosed with autism. The new study followed the same babies until age 3.

Read more here at Spectrum.