S Lang, K.D Bartl-Pokorny, F.B. Pokorny, D Garrido, N Mani, A.V Fox-Boyer, D Zhang, and P.B Marschik (2019)

Canonical Babbling: A marker for earlier identification of late detected developmental disorders.

Current Developmental Disorders Reports.

Purpose of Review To summarize findings about the emergence and characteristics of canonical babbling in children with late detected developmental disorders (LDDDs), such as autism spectrum disorder, Rett syndrome, and fragile X syndrome. In particular, we ask whether infants’ vocal development in the first year of life contains any markers that may contribute to earlier detection of these disorders.

Recent Findings Only a handful studies have investigated canonical babbling in infants with LDDDs. With divergent research paradigms and definitions applied, findings on the onset and characteristics of canonical babbling are inconsistent and difficult to compare. Infants with LDDDs showed reduced likelihood to produce canonical babbling vocalizations. If achieved, this milestone was more likely to be reached beyond the critical time window of 5–10 months.

Summary Canonical babbling appears promising as a potential marker for early detection of infants at risk for developmental disorders. In-depth studies on babbling characteristics in LDDDs are warranted.

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