Disability & developmental disorders
From conception through childhood, our research into disabilities and developmental disorders encompasses any condition that disrupts 'typical' child development. As well as specific causes of intellectual disability such as Down Syndrome and Rett Syndrome this includes Autism Spectrum Disorders, Language Development, birth anomalies, cerebral palsy, and Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder.
Our researchers are focused on understanding the causes of these
conditions, as well as working towards interventions that help the
lives of affected individuals and their families.
- Video: Winthrop Research Professor Carol Bower talks about her ground-breaking research into birth defects
Intellectual disabilities affect a growing number of children across Australia and internationally. The IDEA (Intellectual Disability Exploring Answers) database is one of the only population-based resources in the world dedicated to intellectual disability. Specific research projects on Down syndrome, Rett syndrome (including an international project InterRett), and the CDKL-5 disorder, further explore the impacts of intellectual disability on those affected and their families.
Researchers are also examining critical time points and their relationship with intellectual disability, including pre-term birth, pre and peri-natal risk factors for autism and the transition from school to adulthood for young adults with an intellectual disability.
A child's ability to communicate is one of the most important developmental accomplishments and builds the foundation for success at school and beyond. Language difficulties can limit a child's educational achievement and their social, civic, and economic participation. Read more about our LOOKING at Language project...
Related media releases
- Pregnant women sought for autism study (January 2012)
Cerebral Palsy Team:
Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders Team:
Language Development Team:
Professor Mabel Rice, University of Kansas
Intellectual disability team