MSI PI Part of Nationwide Study That Identifies Autism Biomarkers

Biology

MSI PI Jed Elison, an assistant professor in the Institute of Child Development, is a co-author on a nationwide study that used magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) to discover biomarkers for future development of autistic spectrum disorder (ASD) in infants. The results of the study, published this week in the prestigious journal Nature, studied the brains of babies who had older siblings with autism. They were able to predict development of ASD with 80 percent accuracy. The project involved researchers from across the country. The research can be found on the Nature website: Early brain development in infants at high risk for autism spectrum disorder. The Nature website also includes a summary of the research: Brain scans spot early signs of autism in high-risk babies.

Professor Elison uses MSI resources in his MRI studies of brain development in infancy. He is also featured in the University’s current Driven to Discover campaign: I am driven to detect autism earlier and give kids a better chance to succeed.

An article about this study appears on the College of Education and Human Development website: UMN researchers assist in identifying autism biomarkers in infancy.

The study has drawn considerable local, national, and international media attention: