At Purdue University, researcher Bridgette Tonnsen is examining early risk factors for autism using telemedicine — a medical field which explores diagnosis and treatment remotely through the use of technology. By sending out telehealth kits which include heart monitors, toys, LENA devices and other items, doctors are hoping to better identify early autism markers. This novel approach allows parents to participate in studies without physically interacting with medical researchers, increasing accessibility for many parents. Because autism can be hard to detect early in life, there is incentive to find better ways to do so and subsequently better aid children on the autism spectrum. Although the study is relatively small, with 50 participants, researchers hope to expand the study across the nation. LENA technology will be particularly crucial to understand linguistic and communication patterns between children at risk for autism and their caretakers.