In autism, the brain's response to speech speaks volumes

April 10, 2015 12:06 AM

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When language delays or social detachment mark a baby for a diagnosis of autism, dark clouds cast that child's future in shadow. But researchers have discovered a test that can reliably forecast, some time between a baby's first and second birthday, whether those dark clouds will linger or dissipate.

The new study, published Thursday in the journal Neuron, took eight years -- and the participation of 103 babies -- to complete. But if its findings hold up, all it will take in the future to clarify an autistic child's prognosis is a nap, a mellifluous nursery rhyme and a magnetic resonance imaging...

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