Autism is defined by a common set of behaviors, and not by a singular genetic or environmental cause. Individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities, including those with known genetic conditions, are at increased risk of having behaviors characteristic of autism in comparison to the general population. Recently, more research is under way to examine autistic-like symptomatology in known genetic conditions. This is increasingly important for two reasons, a) understanding ASD symptomatology in a specific population informs providers of additional intervention needs outside of that typically associated with the disorder’s phenotype, and b) linking phenotype to known genotype may assist in informing on the complex genetic causal mechanisms that likely exist to produce the ASD phenotype. The specific objectives of this presentation will be to 1) provide an overview of the increased risk of ASD symptomatology across neurodevelopmental disorders, 2) review behavior and neurobiological findings on social cognitive functioning in several neurodevelopmental disorders in relation to and in direct comparison to ASD, and 3) highlight the clinical and research implications for continued examination of ASD symptomatology in disorders that are not classified under the ASD umbrella.
Review Anastasia Dimitropoulos’s biographical statement.