Telethon Kids Institute partners with NEC to help fight childhood autism

Stock image.
Stock image.

THE Telethon Kids Institute has partnered with tech firm NEC Australia to try and develop tools to detect autism at a young age.

The Institute’s Autism Research Team will explore whether NEC’s artificial intelligence algorithms for eye tracking and facial recognition can be used to develop new diagnostic tools for the condition.

Autism spectrum conditions affect approximately 125,000 people in Australia, meaning around half a million families are directly impacted.

Early detection could allow health professionals and parents to implement changes and strategies to better manage the condition.

The research will also try to reduce the severity of the condition in the child before they become older.

“The Telethon Kids Institute has conducted ground-breaking research into using facial features for diagnosing autism,” NEC Australia’s chief operating officer Mike Barber said.

“We’re at the beginning of our work together but we’re very keen to explore how we can assist and collaborate where possible.

:”For us it has the potential to test and demonstrate completely new applications of our technology in a way that can help improve people’s lives.”