No other simple or interaction effects were significant. With regard to severity of autism symptoms, analysis of the ADOS-T total algorithm scores indicated a significant effect of age (F[1, 99] = 26.64, p< .001), with the ADOS total scores declining from 12 to 24 months. The ADOS-T total scores were significantly higher in HR than LR infants (F[1, 161] = 8.62, p= .004 [d= .50]), and females had lower scores than males (F[1, 161] = .4.71, p= .031 [d= .62]). No other simple or interaction effects were significant. Given the observed group differences in verbal and nonverbal outcomes at 24 months, ADOS SA and RRB as well as Mullen VDQ and NVDQ were included in the models as covariates.Social AttentionFirst we compared the amount of time the infants spent actively attending to the entire social scene (%Scene). For the full model, see tables S1–S3, available online. There were Chawarska et al.Page 6J Am Acad Child Adolesc Psychiatry. Author manuscript; available in PMC 2018 February 15.Author ManuscriptAuthor ManuscriptAuthor ManuscriptAuthor Manuscript
significant effects of age (F[2, 161] = 7.63, p< .001), gender (F[1, 153] = 5.27, p= .023), and risk status (F[1, 153] = 4.47, p= .036), and a gender x risk status interaction (F[1, 153] = 5.42, p= .021) on %Scene, as well as a significant effect of ADOS SA score (F[1, 153] = 6.64, p= .011). No other effects were significant, and the proportion of time spent engaged with the complex visual scene in the first year of life was not related to ADOS RRB (p= .129), VDQ (p= .939), or NVDQ (p= .299) at 24 months. Attention to the scene increased from 6 to 12 months (p< .001) across groups (Figure 2a). Planned contrasts indicated that HR females had higher %Scene than HR males (p= .003, d= .60) and LR females (p= .026, d = .39) (Table 2). HR and LR males did not differ (p= .999), nor did LR females and LR males (p= 1.00). Greater attention to the scene at 6 and 12 months was associated with lower 24-month ADOS SA scores in the HR group (r = -.43, p< .001; r = -.22, p= .047), but not in the LR group (r = .277, p= .107, r = -.167, p= .241). Next, we evaluated if %Scene was associated with the VABS Socialization Scale as an index of social ability. None of the effects at 6 (r= .18, p> 17 and r= 12, p> .48 in HR and LR groups) and 12 months (r= .00, p> .96 and r= .12, p> .38 in HR and LR groups) were significant.An analysis of %Face indicated a significant effect of age (F[1, 143] = 3.56, p= .031), a sex x risk group interaction (F[1, 151] = 4.74, p=.031), and a significant effect of ADOS SA score (F[1, 151] = 4.46, p= .036) at 24 months (Figure 2b). No other effects were significant. There were no significant contributions of ADOS RRB (p= .690), VDQ (p= .551), or NVDQ (p= .965) to the model. Attention to the face increased marginally from 6 to 9 months (p= .091) and decreased from 9 to 12 months (p= .034), but overall, there were no significant changes in %Face from 6 to 12 months (p= .989). HR females exhibited greater attention to the speaker’s face than HR males (p= .048, d =.44) and marginally higher face attention than LR females (p= .057, d =.48) (Table 2). HR and LR males did not differ (p =.992), nor did LR females and males (p= .932). Greater attention to the face was associated with lower 24-month ADOS SA scores in the HR sample, with the effect more pronounced at 6 months (r = -.382, p= .005) than at 12 months (r = -.19, p= .084).
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