The Synapse Centre for Neurodevelopment, ESNEFT, seeks to connect a range of specialities in order to research and better understand the complexities that underline neurodevelopment.

The field of neurodevelopment involves a complex group of diverse conditions which affect the  nervous system, including Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD); Attention Deficit and Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD); Cerebral Palsy; neuromuscular and neurometabolic disorders; as well as genetic syndromes. The effect of these disorders can result in a variety of difficulties including intellectual disability; disorders of communication; problems controlling emotions; and impaired motor function. It is also very common to have associated medical co-morbidities with these conditions such as gastrointestinal disorders.

Early intervention in neurodevelopmental conditions is of paramount importance with the complexity of these disorders necessitating a personalised approach. Rather than providing the child with an umbrella diagnosis that inevitably leads to poor outcomes for the child and poor outcomes in clinical trials, understanding the individual behavioural and biological phenotype of the child is paramount to the future of successful translational research.

Translational research (that is the process of research discoveries in the laboratory being actually applied to the patient) is often neglected in the field of neurodevelopment and is confined to a small number of tertiary centres. At the moment, emphasis is placed on diagnosis of such conditions, while The Synapse Centre strives to go beyond and support families in the long term by seeking to amalgamate a range of bespoke disciplines connected through academic institutions and industry.

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