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Frequently Asked Questions

For Kids

What is a research study?

A research study is a way for people to find out new information that can help others. We want to learn new information about people like you! You can help us learn new things about people by answering some questions, or by giving us a small sample of your saliva or blood.


Will I get anything if I join the research study?

Yes! You or your family will be paid with a gift card for being part of our research study.


Do I have to join the research study?

You do not have to join the study if you decide that you do not want to. The people doing the research and your family will not be mad at you if you do not decide to join the research study. You can ask as many questions as you’d like so that you make the right decision for you.


For Parents

Is my child eligible for Girault Lab research studies?

Both of our current studies (Family Study and iPSC Study) are recruiting by invite only, based on previous study participation. If you have been contacted by our research team about participation, you may respond to the email address which sent you information, or call our lab phone number to discuss eligibility.


Why are you asking for my family’s saliva or blood?

Part of our research goal is to gather information on familial genetic background and its role in explaining variability among different children who have the same genetic condition. Providing saliva from members of your family allows us to examine the DNA of your family members to aid in our data analyses. The research consent form explains the type of analyses we plan to do in more detail.

If your child is a participant in our iPSC study, we wish to gather stem cells from his or her blood in order to create brain organoids, or miniature organs with cells like those in your child’s brain which is grown in a small dish in a laboratory. Studying these brain organoids is an exciting new advancement in neuroscience research which can allow us to learn about cell types as well as cell growth and migration in children. Our goal is to study similarities and differences between children who have autism and their sibling who does or does not also have autism. We already know about differences in the brain very early on (as early as 6 months of age) in children with autism compared to those without autism, and we hope to learn even more about brain differences on the cellular level and in terms of very early brain development by studying brain organoids. Your research consent form also explains our research goals.



Fragile X Syndrome

The National Fragile X Foundation

How is Fragile X Syndrome Inherited?

CDC’s information (text)

CDC’s information (video)


Down Syndrome

National Down Syndrome Society

Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia’s resource page

The Carolina Institute for Developmental Disabilities (CIDD)