Research Projects

Our team is currently conducting a number of collaborative projects that can be grouped into following three synergistic programmatic lines of research:


1. Development of novel, comprehensive assessment protocols that combine parent and clinician reports, objective functioning indicators and incorporate state-of-the-art psychometric, mobile, and connected technologies and procedures in order to provide detailed capture of neurodevelopmental and neuropsychiatric phenotypes. These measures include (a) the Stanford Social Dimensions Scale (SSDS) that was specifically designed to provide a comprehensive assessment of social functioning processes (funded by the NIH R01 MH129833 grant); (b) the Dimensional Assessment of Repetitive Behaviors (DARB) that was developed to capture key subdomains of restricted and repetitive pattern of behaviors and interests (funded by the NIH R21 MH121876 grant); and (c) the Neurobehavioral Evaluation Tool (NET) that encompasses informant-report and remote eye-tracking measures designed to capture key cognitive and clinical subdomains that are crucial for clinical characterization of individuals with neurogenetic syndromes (funded by the SFARI Human Cognitive and Behavioral Science Grant and the PTEN Research grant).

2. Utilizing existing big data resources and applying cutting-edge psychometric and AI procedures to improve the performance of existing assessments across clinical and research contexts. This work is funded by two NIH grants (R15 MH129815 and R03 MH111846).

3. Uncovering the latent structure of clinical phenotypes that characterize neurodevelopmental and neuropsychiatric conditions. These insights are utilized to (i) start capturing and characterizing a highly variable clinical phenotype across a range of conditions and understanding mechanisms underpinning this variability, (ii) combine phenotypic and genetic units of analyses to advance our understanding of the genetic architecture of discrete clinical phenotypes (e.g., restricted and repetitive behaviors), and (iii) focus on identification and characterization of subgroups of individuals that share distinct symptom profiles and demonstrate clinical utility and neurobiological validity.