INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE OF NEURODEVELOPMENTAL DISORDERS

INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE OF NEURODEVELOPMENTAL DISORDERS

Online Meeting | 27-28-29 October 2022

 

  • Online Meeting
  • 36 training hours
  • 18 national and international speakers
  • You can watch the recordings for 12 months


The conference presents an overview of current scientific evidence on psychological assessment, therapeutic and pharmacological treatment in different neurodevelopmental disorders, such as ADHD and Behavioural Disorders, Autism Spectrum Disorders, Speech Disorders, Intellectual Disabilities, Learning Disorders.

A panel of experts and researchers from all over the world will analyse the neuropsychological and psychopathological profiles of the disorders from different perspectives concerning the etiopathogenetic correlates, decision-making algorithms, tools for differential diagnosis and early identification, multimodal interventions in different developmental contexts (from psychotherapy to pharmacotherapy) and the outcome in adulthood.

The theoretical model of reference will be bio-psycho-social, which includes the neuropsychological bases, the elements of assessment and intervention, as well as the social aspects that unite or differ the different countries of the world, with the aim of creating an open space for discussion between speakers and participants.

The conference aims to deeply discuss the contributions of neuroscience in neurodevelopmental disorders: the latest research in the psychological and pharmacological fields will be discussed and presented, investigating the biological bases and repercussions in the family and school context and in the diagnostic and rehabilitation field. The role of emotional factors, attentional executive functions and working memory will be explored, as well as critical issues in measures and models with consequent effects on diagnosis and treatment.

 

Leading experts from the national and international scene will speak during the event.

Simultaneous translation into Italian will be provided throughout the event.

PROGRAM

First day | 27 October 2022 (9 a.m.- 1 p.m. and 2 p.m. - 10 p.m.)

09 a.m. - 11 a.m.: Overview on Neurodevelopmental Disorders: risk and protective factors.
Antonella Gagliano, MD, specialist in Child Neuropsychiatry, Associate Professor of Child Neuropsychiatry, part of The OU of Neurology Department of Health Sciences, University of Catanzaro 

11 a.m. - 1 p.m.: Neuropsychological bases of reading and writing
Daniela Traficante, PhD. Associate Professor at the Faculty of Psychology, Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore, Milan

1p.m. - 2 p.m.: Lunch break

2 p.m. - 4 p.m.: Developmental trajectories of Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder in comorbidity with Specific Learning Disorder
Claudio Vio, Clinical Psychologist, Director of the Complex Operative Unit of Child Neuropsychiatry in San Donà di Piave.

4 p.m. - 6 p.m.: Multifactorial approach to developmental dyscalculia
Luisa Girelli, Phd. Associate Professor at the Department of Psychology, University of Milan-Bicocca.

6 p.m. - 8 p.m.: Explorations of language in Autism Spectrum Disorder
Helen Tager-Flusberg, PhD, Professor at the Department of Psychological Sciences, Director of the Center for Autism Research Excellence, Boston.

8 p.m. - 10 p.m.: Sensory Alterations in Neurodevelopmental Disorders: Origins, Assessment and Intervention
Francisco Rodrìguez Santos, Professor of Neuroscience at the Autonomous University of Madrid

Second day | 28 October 2022 (9 a.m. - 1 p.m. and 2 p.m. - 10 p.m.)

9 a.m. - 11 a.m.: SACS and AS Detect - presentation of useful screening tools for the early identification of autism in the first months of life
Josephine Barbaro, La Trobe University, Bundoora, Australia

11 a.m. - 1 p.m.: Executive Attentional Functions and Working Memory, Critical Issues in Measures and Models. Evidence of methodological bias confirmed by appropriate statistical analysis. Implications for diagnosis and treatment
Francesco Benso, Adjunct Professor at DIPSCO, Rovereto, University of Trento.
Carlo Chiorri, Researcher and Lecturer at the Department of Education Sciences (DISFOR), University of Genoa

1 p.m. - 2 p.m.: Lunch break

2 p.m. - 4 p.m.: Executive Attentional Functions and Working Memory, Critical Issues in Measurements and Models. Evidence of methodological biases confirmed by appropriate statistical analyses. Implications for diagnosis and treatment
Francesco Benso, Adjunct Professor at DIPSCO, Rovereto, University of Trento.
Carlo Chiorri, Researcher and Lecturer at the Department of For Education Sciences (DISFOR) of the University of Genoa

4 p.m. - 6 p.m.: Intellectual profiles in neurodevelopmental disorders
Cesare Cornoldi, Professor emeritus at the Department of General Psychology, University of Padua

6 p.m. - 8 p.m.: Early identification and treatment in children with signs of ASD
Costanza Colombi, Clinical and Developmental Psychologist and researcher at IRCCS Fondazione Stella Maris, Pisa

8 p.m. - 10 p.m.: Numerical cognition and dyscalculia: a new measurement in virtual reality
Nesplora Gema Climent, Elena Salillas

Third day | 29 October 2022 (9 a.m. - 1 p.m. and 2 p.m. - 10 p.m.)

9 a.m. - 11 a.m.: The state of the art of drug therapy in neurodevelopmental disorders: ADHD AND AUTISM
Alessandro Zuddas, Full Professor of Child Neuropsychiatry, University of Cagliari

11 a.m. - 1 p.m.: Developmental and learning potentials in intellectual disabilities
Renzo Vianello, Professor emeritus of Psychology of typical and atypical development, University of Padua

1 p.m. - 2 p.m.: Lunch break

2 p.m. - 4 p.m.: Origins of numerical skills in early childhood
Maria Dolores (Lola) de Hevia, CNRS and Université Paris Cité

4 p.m. - 6 p.m.: General domain deficits in individuals with developmental dyslexia: the effect of sleep on grammar learning
Tali Bitan, Neuropsychologist and Neuroscientist, Professor at the University of Haifa, Israel

6 p.m. - 8 p.m.: The psychiatric comorbidity of autism spectrum disorder
Mohammad Ghaziuddin, Professor of Psychiatry at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor


8 p.m. - 10 p.m. - Closing session (to be announced)

Program
Unit
1
Overview on Neurodevelopmental Disorders: risk and protective factors | Antonella Gagliano
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Durata Modulo
2h 00m
Unit
2
Neuropsychological bases of reading and writing | Daniela Traficante

The aim of the presentation is proposing a summary of the most recent research that, through neuroimaging techniques and longitudinal studies, has made it possible to identify the neurobiological bases involved in the process of learning to read and write and to describe the typical and atypical developmental trajectories. Thanks to that, it is possible to identify risk indices and elements characterising developmental dyslexia and dysorthography.

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Durata Modulo
2h 00m
Unit
3
Developmental trajectories of Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder in comorbidity with Specific Learning Disorder | Claudio Vio

The clinical condition of comorbidity is very frequent among Neurodevelopmental Disorders (cf. Silva et al, 2020).

Indeed, a counselling required for Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) may also present with LSD between 30 and 50 per cent of the subjects, similarly LSD would be more likely to meet the criteria for ADHD as well (between 31 and 45 per cent, cf. DuPaul et al., 2013); not only is the association between LSD and ADHD robust for attention symptoms, but also for those related to hyperactivity/impulsivity (Willcutt and Pennington, 2000).

From the cognitive point of view, there are abilities that identify, in a more or less circumscribed manner, deficits in reading. On the contrary, no neuropsychological profiles have been identified as able to intercept attentional, impulsive/hyperactive problems in a unified manner. Very often, in fact, these people present problems in 'general domain' tests, such as executive functions, which are often impaired in ADHD patients. For this reason, some researchers and clinicians think that this profile may identify a disorder that expresses itself differently from what is expected from the sum of the symptoms of the individual problems.

People with LSD and ADHD present more severe learning problems than peers with SLD but without ADHD.

Define the developmental trajectory of the different neurospychological profiles and examining in depth how symptoms change over time and influence each other is extremely useful not only to recognise risk factors and difficulties in adaptive functioning, but also to identify the appropriate rehabilitation interventions at that particular point in development and modify the developmental prognosis.

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Durata Modulo
2h 00m
Unit
4
Multifactorial approach to developmental dyscalculia | Luisa Girelli

Developmental dyscalculia is a rather frequent and dysabling learning disorder that, in the last decades, has attracted increasing attention from scientists and clinicians, as well as from the popular media. The large body of international literature on developmental dyscalculia has recently  increased our understading of the neurofunctional mechanisms underlying this disorder and, at the same time, it has revealed the impressive heterogeneity of its clinical manifestation. In particular, attention is paid to disentangle the cognitive and non-cognitive factors that may interfere with the development of numerical abilities, increasing the complexity of its clinical assessment. I will briefly review recent theoretical approaches to developmental dyscalculia discussing their clinical implications and the open questions still to be addressed.

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Durata Modulo
2h 00m
Unit
5
Explorations of language in Autism Spectrum Disorder | Helen Tager-Flusberg

Language is one of the most variable characteristics in children and adults with ASD.  Some individuals acquire fluent age-appropriate language skills (though still have difficulties using language appropriately in different social contexts); others acquire language but remain below expectations for their age; and almost one-third fail to acquire more than minimal spoken language skills.  In this talk I will review our research that has explored the developmental trajectories and predictors of language outcomes including behavioral and neural measures and then focus on our current research on minimally verbal autism that investigates the mechanisms that distinguish this subtype of autism.

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Durata Modulo
2h 00m
Unit
6
Sensory Alterations in Neurodevelopmental Disorders: Origins, Assessment and Intervention | Francisco Rodrìguez Santos

During childhood neurological development, alterations in the neural networks involved in obtaining and processing information from the body itself and the environment may occur. These alterations can cause significant disabilities that limit the learning and quality of life of the person. Knowing the causes and their effects through neuropsychological assessment allows us to provide a better response to children's needs.

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Durata Modulo
2h 00m
Unit
7
SACS and AS Detect - presentation of useful screening tools for the early identification of autism in the first months of life | Josephine Barbaro

This presentation will cover 17 years of research into the early signs of autism and the implementation of developmental surveillance from infancy to preschool to identify children on the autism spectrum as early and effectively as possible. It will outline the development, validation, and implementation of three early autism identification tools - Social Attention and Communication Surveillance-Revised (SACS-R) and SACS-Preschool (SACS-PR), used by health and early education professionals from 11-60 months, and ASDetect, a free mobile application for parents and carers of children aged 11-30 months.

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Durata Modulo
2h 00m
Unit
8
Executive Attentional Functions and Working Memory, Critical Issues in Measures and Models. Evidence of methodological bias confirmed by appropriate statistical analysis. Implications for diagnosis and treatment | Francesco Benso

Logical fallacies, very often unconscious, lead to the emergence of cognitive models that are not always adherent to neuroscientific reality. These models are affirmed because  of a confluence of collective judgements often misled by habitual use. The negative repercussions in the diagnostic and habilitative spheres will be discussed. Recent cognitive models on different executive attentional networks will be proposed. 

Demonstrations of 'functional uncertainty' (as per Poldrack, 2006) will be supported by in-depth statistical investigations of the best-known theories of executive functions.

-
Durata Modulo
2h 00m
Unit
9
Executive Attentional Functions and Working Memory, Critical Issues in Measurements and Models. Evidence of methodological biases confirmed by appropriate statistical analyses. Implications for diagnosis and treatment | Francesco Benso

Logical fallacies, very often unconscious, lead to the emergence of cognitive models that are not always adherent to neuroscientific reality. These models are affirmed because  of a confluence of collective judgements often misled by habitual use. The negative repercussions in the diagnostic and habilitative spheres will be discussed. Recent cognitive models on different executive attentional networks will be proposed. 

Demonstrations of 'functional uncertainty' (as per Poldrack, 2006) will be supported by in-depth statistical investigations of the best-known theories of executive functions.

-
Durata Modulo
2h 00m
Unit
10
Intellectual profiles in neurodevelopmental disorders | Cesare Cornoldi

The presentation will highlight some typical features of the intellectual profile in neurodevelopmental disorders, based on the hierarchical model and the findings obtained with multifactorial batteries. In particular, results obtained with the WISC-IV scale in large samples of children with specific learning disorders, ADHD or comorbidities will be highlighted and data concerning autism and Nonverbal Disorder will be presented. The debated topics allow not only to reflect on the organisation of intelligence, but also to assess its implications for clinical work.

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Durata Modulo
2h 00m
Unit
11
Early identification and treatment in children with signs of ASD | Costanza Colombi

Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASDs) can lead to significant disability later in life by impacting an individual's ability to live independently and establish friendships and romantic relationships. Evidence-based early intervention can significantly reduce disability and promote optimal development (Colombi et al., 2018). Children who start evidence-based intervention in the first two years of life seem to show a predictable trajectory of change, whereas children who start the intervention later seem to be less likely to achieve optimal development (Lombardo et al., 2021). Research on siblings conducted in the last two decades suggests that prodromal signs of ASDs emerge in many children during the first year of life, including atypia and immaturity in the area of social-communication. For example, Klin et al. (2013) show how children who receive a diagnosis of ASDs in the future exhibit a progressive decrease in eye contact as measured by eye-tracking between two and six months of age. Recent research shows that specific intervention during the first year of life can significantly reduce disability, improve developmental skills outcomes and, in some cases, perhaps even prevent the emergence of the disorder (Rogers et al., 2014; Whitehouse et al., 2021). The presentation will review recent research on early identification and treatment for children who show prodromal signs of ASDs. Then, some clinical cases of children identified and treated in the first year of life will be illustrated. Finally, the possibility of providing high quality preventive treatment at a very low cost within the educational and healthcare resources and pathways already present in the Italian care system will be discussed.

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Durata Modulo
2h 00m
Unit
12
Numerical cognition and dyscalculia: a new measurement in virtual reality | Nesplora Gema Climent, Elena Salillas

We will contextualize and introduce the basis of INDOOR-MATH, a virtual reality (VR) test for the assessment of numerical capacities and detection of developmental dyscalculia. INDOOR MATH exploits VR potential for generating stimuli with realistic visuospatial quality. And it aims to precisely describe the different profiles of the disability to help paths for compensation.

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Durata Modulo
2h 00m
Unit
13
The state of the art of drug therapy in neurodevelopmental disorders: ADHD AND AUTISM | Alessandro Zuddas
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Durata Modulo
2h 00m
Unit
14
Developmental and learning potentials in intellectual disabilities | Renzo Vianello

The presentation will propose: The fundamental results of studies and research conducted on psychological development in the case of intellectual disabilities, considered in their multiplicity of profiles (particularly evident when comparing different syndromes such as Down's, fragile X, Williams, Prader-Willi, Angelman syndromes, etc.), on the effects of inclusion in normal versus special contexts, on the positive effects of habilitation, educational and school-based interventions, on the surplus effect, which involves higher adaptive performance typical of the special contexts, and on the effects of the "surplus effect", which involves higher adaptive performance typical of the special contexts. ), on the effects of inclusion in normal versus special contexts, on the positive effects of habilitative, educational and scholastic interventions, on the surplus effect, which involves adaptive performance superior to that typical of the population of equivalent mental ages. A space will be dedicated to the presentation of the Intervention Guides.

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Durata Modulo
2h 00m
Unit
15
Origins of numerical skills in early childhood | Maria Dolores (Lola) de Hevia

The use of space to represent non-spatial domains is a fundamental cognitive ability. One prominent example is the case of numbers, so that numerical magnitudes are represented along a spatial continuum (known as the ‘mental number line’). I’ll discuss evidence that

number-space links are functional at birth and throughout development, supporting the view that the ‘mental number line’ is not a product of human invention.

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Durata Modulo
2h 00m
Unit
16
General domain deficits in individuals with developmental dyslexia: the effect of sleep on grammar learning | Tali Bitan

Developmental dyslexia is a specific learning disorder, that affects academic skills and particularly reading ability. In addition to reading and phonological deficits there is evidence for a wider range of affected skills. Using behavioral, fMRI and sleep measurements our studies examined the ability of individuals with developmental dyslexia to process and learn new linguistic morphological regularities and compared them to the learning of motor skills. Our findings show that while individuals with developmental dyslexia can rely on morphological decomposition to compensate for their phonological deficits during reading, they are impaired in learning new morphological inflections.  Further, the results point to a domain general deficit in learning and processing of statistical regularities, which may be related to reduced effects of sleep on offline consolidation processes.

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Durata Modulo
2h 00m
Unit
17
The psychiatric comorbidity of autism spectrum disorder | Mohammad Ghaziuddin

Psychiatric disorders often occur in persons with autism. Appearing at different stages across the life span, they impact the quality of life of the individual and add to the burden of care of the family.  This presentation will review the recent findings on the psychiatric comorbidity of autism.  Clinical correlates of commonly occurring disorders will be reappraised, and challenges to the management of less frequently diagnosed conditions examined. 

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Durata Modulo
2h 00m
Unit
18
Closing session (to be announced)
-
Durata Modulo
2h 00m
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SUBSCRIPTIONS

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Certificate of attendance