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Dr. Bob Schultz discusses building a top autism research center

Date Published: 
October 19, 2011
Year Published: 
2011
Abstract: 

Dr. Bob Schultz has built the Center for Autism Research from the ground up. Dr. Schultz explains how CAR seeks to understand what causes autism and how CAR serves the community of families affected by autism. In training the next generation of scientists...

Dr. Bob Schultz has built the Center for Autism Research from the ground up. Dr. Schultz explains how CAR seeks to understand what causes autism and how CAR serves the community of families affected by autism. In training the next generation of scientists, Dr. Schultz also stresses the need for children to participate in studies. With higher participation rates, Dr. Schultz hopes to make diagnoses earlier in a child's lifespan and give treatments as quickly as possible.

 

ASF Founding Board Member Dr. Paul Offit Elected to the Institute of Medicine

Abstract: 

For three decades, Dr. Offit has been a leading researcher in the fields of virology and immunology, and a well-respected and outspoken voice on the science, safety and value of childhood vaccinations. He is one of the most public faces of the scientific consensus that vaccines have no association with autism. He is also one of the most public faces of the scientific consensus that vaccines have no association with autism. Through his advocacy, Dr. Offit has successfully cut through misinformation and helped to educate parents on the health benefits of vaccinating their children. In addition to hundreds of academic articles, he is the author of four critically-acclaimed medical narratives, including Autism’s False Prophets, which have sought to educate parents and bring scientific research back into the discussion on vaccination decisions.

Autism Science Foundation Founding Board Member Dr. Paul Offit has been elected to the Institute of Medicine (IOM) at the Academy of Natural Sciences. For three decades, Dr. Offit has been a leading researcher in the fields of virology and immunology, and a well-respected and outspoken voice on the science, safety and value of childhood vaccinations.  He is also one of the most public faces of the scientific consensus that vaccines have no association with autism. 

Through his advocacy, Dr. Offit has successfully cut through misinformation and helped to educate parents on the health benefits of vaccinating their children. In addition to hundreds of academic articles, he is the author of four critically-acclaimed medical narratives, including Autism’s False Prophets, which have sought to educate parents and bring scientific research back into the discussion on vaccination decisions.

“I have never met anyone who cared more about the health and well-being of children than Paul Offit” said Alison Singer, president of the Autism Science Foundation.  “All of us at ASF congratulate him on this well-deserved appointment and look forward to the great work he will do as part of the IOM.”

The IOM announced the election of 65 new members from throughout the United States, in recognition of their major contributions to the advancement of the medical sciences, health care and public health. Noted autism researcher, Dr. Daniel H Geschwind, the Gordon and Virginia MacDonald Distinguished Chair in Human Genetics and professor of neurology and psychiatry, department of neurology, University of California, Los Angeles was also elected. Dr. Geschwind served as the program committee chair for the 2011 International Meeting for Autism Research. 

Established in 1970 by the Academy of Natural Sciences, the IOM honors professional achievements in the health sciences and serves as a national resource for independent analysis and recommendations on issues related to medicine, biomedical sciences, and health. Current members of the Institute elect new members from a slate of candidates nominated for their professional achievement. 

"It is a great pleasure to welcome these distinguished and accomplished individuals to the Institute of Medicine," said IOM President Harvey V. Fineberg.  "Each of these new members stands out as a professional whose research, knowledge, and skills have significantly advanced health and medicine, and their achievements are an inspiration.  The Institute of Medicine is greatly enriched by the addition of our newly elected colleagues."

Dr. Offit is the director of the Vaccine Education Center and chief of Infectious Diseases at The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. In addition, Dr. Offit holds the Maurice R. Hilleman Endowed Chair in Vaccinology and is a Professor of Pediatrics at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine. He serves on the board of directors of numerous organizations including the Autism Science Foundation and Every Child by Two.

During his tenure as a pediatrician specializing in infectious diseases, Dr. Offit’s work includes 25 years spent dedicated to developing RotaTeq, one of two vaccines currently used to fight rotavirus, a disease that is the leading cause of severe, dehydrating diarrhea in infants and young children. RotaTeq is recommended for universal use in infants by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and has the capacity to save as many as 2,000 lives per day.

Dr. Timothy Roberts Uses Imaging to Measure Autism Treatment Response (VIDEO)

Date Published: 
October 17, 2011
Abstract: 

Dr. Timothy Roberts of Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP) Center for Autism Research (CAR) is using MEG technology to measure the biological response to new medical treatments in children with autism. Eventually, he says, MEG will be used to determine which children with autism are most likely to respond to a given treatment. CHOP is participating in the ongoing arboclofen trials, sponsored by Seaside Therapeutics, for children with Fragile X and is using MEG technology as a noninvasive way to measure the biological changes in the brain that result from arboclofen intervention. Dr. Roberts also explains the value of imaging for developing new autism treatments and improving existing treatments.

Institute For Basic Research in New York seeking adults with Fragile X for New Clinical Trial

Source: 
October 17, 2011
Abstract: 

The Institute for Basic Research in Staten Island is seeking adult participants for a new Fragile X treatment trial. This is a large scale trial of AFQ056 from Novartis for people aged 18-45 who have Fragile X. AFQ056 is an mGluR5 antagonist. The current study is just for adults but the next step is to extend the trial to ages 12-17. After completing the 20 week trial, participants will be offered the option of taking this medication free of charge until it comes to market.

The Institute for Basic Research in Staten Island is seeking adult participants for a new Fragile X treatment trial. 

This is a large scale trial of AFQ056 from Novartis for people aged 18-45 who have Fragile X.  AFQ056 is an mGluR5 antagonist.  The current study is just for adults but the next step is to extend the trial to ages 12-17.  After completing the 20 week trial, participants will be offered the option of taking this medication free of charge until it comes to market.

The principal investigator on this study is Dr. Angelo Porto, Dept. of Psychology, Institute for Basic Research(IBR). porto_a@medscape.com or 718-494-8028

Additional information about AFQ056 and the study can be found at fraxa.org/getInvolved_studies.aspx

Researchers find autism more common with low birth weight

Source: 
Philadelphia Inquirer
Date Published: 
October 17, 2011
Abstract: 

Autism is far more common in low-birth-weight babies than the general population, researchers are reporting, a significant finding that nevertheless raises more questions than it answers and illustrates how little is known about a group of disorders that affect nearly 1 percent of American children.

Diagnosing Autism At A Younger Age Could Lead To Earlier Interventions

Source: 
Medical News Today
Date Published: 
October 16, 2011
Abstract: 

Autism is normally diagnosed between the ages of 2 and 3, but new research is finding symptoms of autism spectrum disorders in babies as young as 12 months.

IMFAR 2012 Call for Abstracts

Source: 
INSAR
Date Published: 
October 14, 2011

Illinois medical board files complaint against star autism doctor

Source: 
Chicago Tribune
Date Published: 
October 14, 2011
Abstract: 

Dr. Anjum Usman, of Naperville, has been a star in the world of alternative treatments for autism for years, but now she's facing professional discipline for her approach to the frustrating disorder.

According to the complaint, which was filed Wednesday, Usman "made statements to (the boy's) mother that the prescribed treatments had positive clinical benefits for children with autism, despite the lack of empirical research."

Boys With Autism May Grow Faster as Babies

Source: 
US News HealthDay
Date Published: 
October 7, 2011
Abstract: 

Boys with autism tend to grow faster as babies, with differences from typically developing infants seen in their head size, height and weight, a new study says. Researchers said the findings may offer new clues about the underlying mechanisms of autism. A larger head size probably means the children also have a larger brain.

The Accuracy Of Autism Diagnosis In Children With Down Syndrome Validated By New Findings

Source: 
Medical News Today
Date Published: 
October 6, 2011
Abstract: 

New findings from a 16-year study confirm that the Diagnostic and Statistic Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM), the gold-standard for the classification of mental health conditions, can be used to accurately identify autism spectrum disorders (ASD) in children with Down syndrome, according to research from Kennedy Krieger Institute.