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Earlier Intervention: Autism Treatment for Infants

Encouraging results from a pilot study of a 12-week, parent-delivered autism treatment for infants were announced this week. Parents were coached by therapists to incorporate evidence-based techniques from the Early Start Denver Model of autism treatment with their infants, all of whom were already showing signs of autism in infancy. The study was small (7 infants), so future randomized control trials are needed to confirm the effects of the treatment. Autism early identification research is increasingly focusing on the 6 month age range as the point at which changes in brain development, eye gaze, motor skills, and social communication behaviors can be detected in individuals with autism spectrum disorders. To read the original study, see Autism Treatment in the First Year of Life: A Pilot Study of Infant Start, a Parent-Implemented Intervention for Symptomatic Infants.