Autism is a neurodevelopmental disorder of early onset marked by a profound social disability affecting a person’s capacity for understanding other people, intuiting their feelings, and establishing reciprocal relationships (1). Although several other developmental disabilities typically accompany autism’s social dysfunction, including language and communication, learning, and unusual behavioral patterns, the core social disorder defines the condition and likely affects the development and expression of these other skills (2). However, despite its centrality in the syndrome’s definition, a more precise characterization and quantification of the social dysfunction required to direct neurobiological research in autism is still lacking (3). For example, major advances in the genetics of autism have identified candidate susceptibility loci (4), but it i
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