Leonard Abbeduto, Ph.D. for UC Davis Health

Leonard Abbeduto, Ph.D.

Professor, Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences

Director, UC Davis MIND Institute

To see if Leonard Abbeduto is accepting new patients, or for assistance finding a UC Davis doctor, please call 800-2-UCDAVIS (800-282-3284).




Neurodevelopmental Disorders


Locations and Contact

UC Davis MIND Institute

UC Davis MIND Institute
2825 50th St.
Sacramento, CA 95817

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Additional Numbers



Clinic Phone


Physician Referrals

800-4-UCDAVIS (800-482-3284)

Research/Academic Interests

Dr. Abbeduto’s research is focused broadly on the development of language across the lifespan in individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities and on the family context for language development. Dr. Abbeduto has published more than 200 articles, chapters, reviews, and books on fragile X syndrome, autism, Down syndrome, and child development. His program of research has been funded nearly continuously by NIH since 1985. His current research is focused on understanding variation in language outcomes in various conditions associated with intellectual disability, the measurement of treatment effects in clinical trials, and the use of distance technology to deliver behavioral treatment. He serves as Principal Investigator and Director of the NIH-funded MIND Institute Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities Research Center (IDDRC), which provides core support to more than 80 projects and 40 scientists at the UC Davis MIND Institute. He also co-directs the UC Davis Redwood SEED Scholars program, which is a 4-year, residential, inclusive college program for individuals with intellectual disabilities.


Clinical Psychologist

Center/Program Affiliation

UC Davis MIND Institute

Undergraduate School

B.A., Psychology, University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago IL 1975

Other School

M.A., Psychology, University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago IL 1979

Other School

Ph.D., Psychology, University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago IL 1982

Edgar A. Doll Career Research Award, American Psychological Association (Division 33), 2017

Fellow, American Psychological Association (Division 33), 2014

Enid and William Rosen Research Award, National Fragile X Foundation, 2010

Distinguished Faculty Award, University of Wisconsin School of Education, 2008

Charles J. Anderson Professor of Education, University of Wisconsin-Madison, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011

Kellett Mid-Career Research Award, University of Wisconsin-Madison, 2008

Fellow, American Association on Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities, 2000

Vilas Associates Award, University of Wisconsin-Madison, 1997, 1998

Emil H. Steiger Distinguished Teaching Award, University of Wisconsin-Madison, 1996

Faculty Stewardship Award, UC Davis, 2017

Bullard L, Harvey D, Abbeduto L. Exploring the feasibility of collecting multimodal multiperson assessment data via distance in families affected by fragile X syndrome. J Telemed Telecare. 2021 Apr 12:1357633X211003810. doi:10.1177/1357633X211003810. Epub ahead of print. PMID:33840279.

Thurman AJ, Potter LA, Kim K, Tassone F, Banasik A, Potter SN, Bullard L, Nguyen V, McDuffie A, Hagerman R, Abbeduto L. Controlled trial of lovastatin combined with an open-label treatment of a parent-implemented language intervention in youth with fragile X syndrome. J Neurodev Disord. 2020 Apr 22;12(1):12. doi:10.1186/s11689-020-09315-4. PMID:32316911.

Abbeduto L, Berry-Kravis E, Sterling A, Sherman S, Edgin JO, McDuffie A, Hoffmann A, Hamilton D, Nelson M, Aschkenasy J, Thurman AJ. Expressive language sampling as a source of outcome measures for treatment studies in fragile X syndrome: feasibility, practice effects, test-retest reliability, and construct validity. J Neurodev Disord. 2020 Mar 24;12(1):10. doi:10.1186/s11689-020-09313-6. Erratum in: J Neurodev Disord. 2020 Apr 2;12(1):11. PMID:32204695.

del Hoyo Soriano L, Rosser T, Hamilton D, Wood T, Abbeduto L, Sherman S.  Gestational age is related to symptoms of Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder in late-preterm to full-term children and adolescents with Down syndrome. Scientific Reports. 2020;10(1):20345. doi:10.1038/s41598-020-77392-5.

Abbeduto L, Thurman AJ, McDuffie A, Klusek J, Feigles RT, Ted Brown W, Harvey DJ, Adayev T, LaFauci G, Dobkins C, Roberts JE. ASD Comorbidity in Fragile X Syndrome: Symptom Profile and Predictors of Symptom Severity in Adolescent and Young Adult Males. J Autism Dev Disord. 2019 Mar;49(3):960-977. doi:10.1007/s10803-018-3796-2. PMID:30382442.

Conners FA, Tungate AS, Abbeduto L, Merrill EC, Faught GG. Growth and Decline in Language and Phonological Memory Over Two Years Among Adolescents With Down Syndrome. Am J Intellect Dev Disabil. 2018 Mar;123(2):103-118. doi:10.1352/1944-7558-123.2.103. PMID:29480772.

Channell MM, Loveall SJ, Conners FA, Harvey DJ, Abbeduto L. Narrative Language Sampling in Typical Development: Implications for Clinical Trials. Am J Speech Lang Pathol. 2018 Feb 6;27(1):123-135. doi:10.1044/2017_AJSLP-17-0046. PMID:29222570.

McDuffie A, Banasik A, Bullard L, Nelson S, Feigles RT, Hagerman R, Abbeduto L. Distance delivery of a spoken language intervention for school-aged and adolescent boys with fragile X syndrome. Dev Neurorehabil. 2018 Jan;21(1):48-63. doi:10.1080/17518423.2017.1369189. Epub 2017 Sep 28. PMID:28956679.

McDuffie A, Oakes A, Machalicek W, Ma M, Bullard L, Nelson S, Abbeduto L. Early Language Intervention Using Distance Video-Teleconferencing: A Pilot Study of Young Boys With Fragile X Syndrome and Their Mothers. Am J Speech Lang Pathol. 2016 Feb;25(1):46-66. doi:10.1044/2015_AJSLP-14-0137. PMID:26502382.

Abbeduto L, McDuffie A, Thurman AJ. The fragile X syndrome-autism comorbidity: what do we really know? Front Genet. 2014 Oct 16;5:355. doi:10.3389/fgene.2014.00355. PMID:25360144.