EU-AIMS - identification of markers of autism

The study "European Autism Interventions - A Multicentre Study for Developing New Medications" (EU-AIMS) was a collaboration between several European Universities and pharmaceutical companies. The study aim was to identify cognitive and biological markers of autism that may facilitate an earlier and more accurate diagnosis, prognosis, and development of new therapies/medications.


KIND contributed to EU-AIMS through the RATSS twin study, which aims to increase knowledge on the causes of autism and ADHD. Some who have already participated in RATSS were invited to also participate in the EU-AIMS.

To identify markers of autism, EU-AIMS used a variety of tests and techniques, such as neuroimaging to assess brain structures and processes; eye tracking technology to examine where participants focus their gaze; blood and saliva for genetic analyses; psychological tests and questionnaires to assess e.g., intelligence, social cognition, and sensory processing.

Data collection took place between 2014 and 2016.

In the larger EU-AIMS cohort, with over 700 participants, results show that degree of autistic symptoms varies by age and gender. Symptoms were more prevalent among children compared to adults, and among males compared to females. In self-reports, findings were the opposite, with more self-rated autistic symptoms among adult females. Other mental health conditions were common. Males with autism had more ADHD than females with autism, and females had more depression. Several papers have been published based on neuroimaging data.

For more information on EU-AIMS, please contact


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Johan Isaksson

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