Brain-based biomarkers of language acquisition in neurodevelopmental disorders
Several studies in our lab focus on identifying biomarkers of language development in young children at risk for severe language impairment, including infant siblings of children with autism spectrum disorders, and genetic disorders such as Fragile X syndrome and Down syndrome. Biomarkers identified through these studies could be used as objective measures of language prognosis, treatment monitoring during clinical trials, and development of effective therapies.
The BRIDGE Study (BRain Indicators of Developmental Growth) aims to understand how differences in brain activity affect learning, language, and behavior in children with Fragile X Syndrome, Down syndrome, and autism spectrum disorder.
Early brain development
We are interested in understanding biological and environmental factors that impact early brain development and, in turn, functional outcomes in children. What is the expected developmental trajectory of a variety of EEG-based brain measures over the first three years of life? Are individual differences in developmental trajectory associated with developmental outcomes, and if so, what factors mediate these individual differences?
Baby Steps Study
With the Baby Steps study we are bringing EEG into the primary care clinic at Boston Children’s Hospital. This longitudinal study will complete EEGs during well child visits during the first year of life and assess cognitive, language, and social development at 2-years of age. Our goal is to improve early identification of developmental delay and autism in a diverse population.