Simons Foundation Lectures are free public colloquia related to basic science and mathematics. These high-level talks are intended for professors, students, postdocs and business professionals, but interested people from the metropolitan area are welcome as well.
In this presentation, Ami Klin will present infant and toddler data on two behavioral assays measuring highly conserved and developmentally early emerging social adaptive behaviors. His findings suggest that these measures are more proximal to gene expression, better capture unfolding social adaptive developmental mechanisms and are more presymptomatic and more highly quantitative than prior work. The findings have the potential to bridge genetic determinants and symptomatic outcomes, create a common framework for gene-brain-behavior research and constrain future models of pathogenesis.
These concepts also have translational value in addressing autism as a public health challenge via efforts to develop community-viable systems to reduce age of diagnosis and improve access to early care in the general population. Klin’s programmatic goal at the Marcus Autism Center research enterprise is to capitalize on new science in order to address still-intractable health care challenges.