Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders

, Volume 37, Issue 3, pp 523–536 | Cite as

Quantitative Assessment of Autism Symptom-related Traits in Probands and Parents: Broader Phenotype Autism Symptom Scale

  • Geraldine Dawson
  • Annette Estes
  • Jeffrey Munson
  • Gerard Schellenberg
  • Raphael Bernier
  • Robert Abbott
Original Paper

Abstract

Autism susceptibility genes likely have effects on continuously distributed autism-related traits, yet few measures of such traits exist. The Broader Phenotype Autism Symptom Scale (BPASS), developed for use with affected children and family members, measures social motivation, social expressiveness, conversational skills, and flexibility. Based on 201 multiplex families, psychometric data on the BPASS are reported. Adequate inter-rater reliability and internal consistency were found. Parents had lower BPASS scores than affected children, after controlling for IQ. Parents and affected children showed overlapping distributions suggesting the BPASS captured variability in traits across groups. BPASS scores were not correlated with ethnicity or parent education; however, some domains were correlated with IQ. The BPASS holds promise as a quantitative phenotypic assessment for genetic studies.

Keywords

Broader phenotype Genetics Quantitative traits Autism 

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, Inc. 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  • Geraldine Dawson
    • 1
  • Annette Estes
    • 1
    • 2
  • Jeffrey Munson
    • 1
  • Gerard Schellenberg
    • 3
  • Raphael Bernier
    • 1
  • Robert Abbott
    • 4
  1. 1.University of Washington Autism Center and Department of PsychologyUniversity of WashingtonSeattleUSA
  2. 2.Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral SciencesUniversity of WashingtonSeattleUSA
  3. 3.Veterans Affairs Medical Center, Seattle; Departments of Medicine, Neurology and PharmacologyUniversity of WashingtonSeattleUSA
  4. 4.Department of Educational PsychologyUniversity of WashingtonSeattleUSA

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