The Autism Biomarkers Consortium for Clinical Trials (ABC-CT): Scientific Context, Study Design, and Progress Toward Biomarker Qualification

James C. McPartland, Raphael A. Bernier, Shafali S. Jeste, Geraldine Dawson, Charles A. Nelson, Katarzyna Chawarska, Rachel Earl, Susan Faja, Scott P. Johnson, Linmarie Sikich, Cynthia A. Brandt, James D. Dziura (+12 others)
2020 Frontiers in Integrative Neuroscience  
Clinical research in neurodevelopmental disorders remains reliant upon clinician and caregiver measures. Limitations of these approaches indicate a need for objective, quantitative, and reliable biomarkers to advance clinical research. Extant research suggests the potential utility of multiple candidate biomarkers; however, effective application of these markers in trials requires additional understanding of replicability, individual differences, and intra-individual stability over time. The
more » ... ism Biomarkers Consortium for Clinical Trials (ABC-CT) is a multi-site study designed to investigate a battery of electrophysiological (EEG) and eye-tracking (ET) indices as candidate biomarkers for autism spectrum disorder (ASD). The study complements published biomarker research through: inclusion of large, deeply phenotyped cohorts of children with ASD and typical development; a longitudinal design; a focus on well-evidenced candidate biomarkers harmonized with an independent sample; high levels of clinical, regulatory, technical, and statistical rigor; adoption of a governance structure incorporating diverse expertise in the ASD biomarker discovery and qualification process; prioritization of open science, including creation of a repository containing biomarker, clinical, and genetic data; and use of economical and scalable technologies that are applicable in developmental populations and those with special needs. The ABC-CT approach has yielded encouraging results, with one measure accepted into the FDA's Biomarker Qualification Program to date. Through these advances, the ABC-CT and other biomarker studies in progress hold promise to deliver novel tools to improve clinical trials research in ASD.
doi:10.3389/fnint.2020.00016 pmid:32346363 pmcid:PMC7173348 fatcat:4dyt3pkjbrh67nglhz7dautxdm