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Early infant candidate markers of autistic social trait developmental trajectories in the general population

Halliday, Gemma; (2019) Early infant candidate markers of autistic social trait developmental trajectories in the general population. Doctoral thesis (D.Clin.Psy), UCL (University College London). Green open access

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Abstract

This thesis investigated early infant candidate markers of developmental trajectories of autistic social traits (ASTs) in a large general population cohort: the Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children (ALSPAC). Previous research on the relationship between internalising and externalising traits and autistic traits (ATs) in the general population was reviewed, and limitations and directions for research and clinical implications have been highlighted. Part 1, the literature review, quantified the association between ATs and internalising (anxiety and depression) and externalising (attention deficit hyperactivity disorder [ADHD], conduct disorder and oppositional defiant disorder) symptoms in the general population for the first time. A positive correlation between ATs and internalising and externalising symptoms (ADHD only) was identified, with medium to large effect sizes. Individuals with more severe ATs experience higher levels of psychopathologic traits across the lifespan. Part 2, the empirical paper, investigated early infant behavioural predictors of AST latent developmental trajectories from mid-childhood to mid-adolescence (seven to 16 years) and explored gender differences in predictors in a large general population cohort (n=7,773) using multi-group Latent Growth Curve Analysis. Social communication, language and temperament characteristics at 15 and 24 months predicted initial AST status. Trends towards gender differences were observed, with markers more strongly associated with male ASTs. Developmental differences from infancy predict childhood AST severity and this may differ between genders, however such predictors are limited in explaining AST chronogeneity. Part 3, the critical appraisal, considers limitations, dilemmas, directions for future research, and offers personal reflections on the research process.

Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Qualification: D.Clin.Psy
Title: Early infant candidate markers of autistic social trait developmental trajectories in the general population
Event: UCL (University College London)
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Language: English
Additional information: Copyright © The Author 2019. Original content in this thesis is licensed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0) Licence (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/). Any third-party copyright material present remains the property of its respective owner(s) and is licensed under its existing terms. Access may initially be restricted at the author’s request.
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10081711
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