, Volume 42, Issue 10, pp 2121-2140

The Study to Explore Early Development (SEED): A Multisite Epidemiologic Study of Autism by the Centers for Autism and Developmental Disabilities Research and Epidemiology (CADDRE) Network

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Abstract

The Study to Explore Early Development (SEED), a multisite investigation addressing knowledge gaps in autism phenotype and etiology, aims to: (1) characterize the autism behavioral phenotype and associated developmental, medical, and behavioral conditions and (2) investigate genetic and environmental risks with emphasis on immunologic, hormonal, gastrointestinal, and sociodemographic characteristics. SEED uses a case–control design with population-based ascertainment of children aged 2–5 years with an autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and children in two control groups—one from the general population and one with non-ASD developmental problems. Data from parent-completed questionnaires, interviews, clinical evaluations, biospecimen sampling, and medical record abstraction focus on the prenatal and early postnatal periods. SEED is a valuable resource for testing hypotheses regarding ASD characteristics and causes.

Disclaimer: The findings and conclusions in this report are those of the authors and do not necessarily represent the official position of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.