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Archived News: In Research and Intervention
April 2011

Autism Speaks Awards $770,000 For Gastrointestinal Research In Autism

Recognizing that gastrointestinal (GI) dysfunction affects many children and adolescents with autism spectrum disorders (ASD), Autism Speaks, the world's largest autism science and advocacy organization, has granted a significant Suzanne and Bob Wright Trailblazer Award for research into the biological mechanisms of GI disorders in ASD. Paul Ashwood, Ph.D., of the M.I.N.D. Institute of UC Davis, the lead Principal Investigator and his collaborators Alessio Fasano, M.D. at University of Maryland School of Medicine, and Sarkis Mazmanian, Ph.D. and Paul Patterson, Ph.D., of the California Institute of Technology will receive $769,943 over a two year period to investigate the underlying biology of GI dysfunction in children with ASD, and in an animal model, test a novel probiotic therapy to restore function of the GI system.

More information:

Autism Speaks Press Release


The Interagency Autism Coordinating Committee of the US Department of Health and Human Services has released its 2011 Strategic Plan.

The Interagency Autism Coordinating committee (IACC) has released its 2011 strategic plan for Autism Spectrum Disorder Research. The Plan provides a blueprint for autism research that is advisory to the Department of Health and Human Services and serves as a basis for partnerships with other agencies and private organizations involved in autism research and services. Under the Combating Autism Act of 2006), it must be updated on an annual basis. To this end, the 2011 Plan has been updated by the IACC to reflect important new scientific advances in the field over the past year, emerging areas of opportunity, and areas where more research is necessary. Input from the ASD community, advocacy groups, research funding organizations, and the scientific community has continued to be a critical aspect of the updating process.

More information:

The 2011 Interagency Autism Coordinating Committee Strategic Plan for Autism Spectrum Disorder Research


View the archives of PBS's six episode series on autism.

The NewsHour series finished with a discussion of the public policy issues raised in the series, including the enormous discrepancy in the quality and availability of services for children and future adults in what the federal committee that determines research priorities for autism now calls a "national health emergency" with a panel of experts including: Dr. Thomas Insel, Director of the National Institute of Mental Health, Catherine Lord, Professor of Psychology, Pediatrics and Psychiatry at the University of Michigan, Ilene Lainer, Executive Director of the New York Center for Autism – a private advocacy group, and John Shestack, a Hollywood producer and the co-founder of “Cure Autism Now” a former advocacy group.

All episodes in the series, as well as additional information and extended interviews, can also be viewed on their website.

More information:

PBS NewsHour Autism Now


Dr. Brian Iwata conducts two day workshops (April 26&27 in Baltimore and April 28&29 in Philadephia), entitled, “Funcational Analysis & Treatment of Severe Behavior Disorders.

Dr Brian Iwata will conduct a two-day workshop, “Functional Analysis & Treatment of Severe Behavior Disorders,” April 26 – 27 in Baltimore, MD and April 28 - 29 in Philadelphia, PA. All will receive a certificate of attendance. BCBAs and BCaBAs will receive 12 Type II CE credits and Psychologists will receive 11 CE Credits.

More information:

Workshop Overview


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