In the laboratories at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill 92 infants at 6 months old had an MRI called diffusion tensor imaging. All the babies tested were at high risk for autism due to their older siblings having it. The children were then tested again at 1 and 2 years old, also at 2 years old they had a behavioral test. 28 of them showed signs of autism through the behavioral test.
After looking at all 3 brain scans, researchers noticed that the white matter fiber showed a different development. The white matter fiber are pathways that neurons in the brain use to connect to other parts of the brain. The brain scans of the 28 kids diagnosed with autism revealed that the white matter pathways grew quicker and more dense than normal.
Although this has not been proven to be a 100 percent effective test for autism and many people debate its efficiency, it leads us on the right path. Because of the technology we have today, we are able to get this kind of research and hopefully be able to research further with neuro-imaging.
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Falco, M. (2012, February 17). The chart: Brain scans in infants shed light on autism onset. Retrieved from http://thechart.blogs.cnn.com/2012/02/17/brain-scans-in-infants-shed-light-on-autism-onset/?