AUTISM

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8/15/2022

New Horizons of Discovery on Sex Differences in Autism

The sex ratio for autism, 3 boys for every girl, occurs long before the time of puberty and is observed in all populations around the world, but its cause has remained a mystery. The Washington University Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities Research Center has been hard at work for years trying to uncover the biology of this profoundly influential sex difference. This year, the IDDRC team joined the Simons Foundation Autism Research Initiative Collaboration on Sex Differences in Autism, an international effort to combine the technologies and work of a select group of scientists around the world to further advance understanding of the biological mechanisms that distinguish males and females in the recognition, expression, and incidence of autism.

 
 
Jillian Reiher

8/8/2022

CDD Psychologist Makes Going to the Dentist a Team Effort

A psychologist at Iowa's Center for Disabilities and Development worked with a patient to create a successful visit to the pediatric dentistry clinic.

 
 
A teacher is teaching a young student how to right. The teacher is a white woman with brown curly hair and a white shirt. The student is around 5 years old and is a white boy with short brown hair and a yellow polo shirt. They are both holding pencil

8/5/2022

Vanderbilt Kennedy Center (TN IDDRC, UCEDD, LEND) Introduces New Toolkits Promoting Neurodiversity and Self-determination in Early Childhood Services

The Vanderbilt Kennedy Center (VKC)(TN IDDRC, UCEDD, LEND) recently introduced two brand-new educational resources promoting neurodiversity and self-determination in early childhood services. The toolkits were created by the VKC Treatment and Research Institute for Autism Spectrum Disorder (TRIAD) and the Vanderbilt Consortium LEND Training Program.

 
 

8/1/2022

Engineering non-hallucinogenic versions of psychedelics to treat psychiatric conditions

By David E. Olson, Associate Professor, Department of Chemistry and Department of Biochemistry & Molecular Medicine

Psychedlic drugs like MDMA and LSD can promote neuroplasticity and help treat some mental illnesses in autistic adults. To lessen the risk of dangerous side effects, the Olson Lab created safer, non-hallucinogenic psychedelics that show promise in models.

 
 
Speed coaching event, UCLA PEERS for Careers program

8/1/2022

PEERS for CAREERS

There will be an estimated 700,000 autistic adults aging into adulthood over the next 10 years. Yet, a staggering 80% of autistic adults are unemployed. The UCLA PEERS for Careers program was developed to address the challenges faced by autistic young adults in their transition from college to career and to create a scalable solution to employment barriers faced by autistic individuals to serve as a model of higher education training for colleges across the country.

 
 

7/27/2022

Autism characteristics in individuals with Down syndrome

Amanda Dimachkie Nunnally, PhD, Postdoctoral Research Scholar, UC Davis Mind Institute

There is still much to be understood about the presentation of autism symptoms in individuals with Down syndrome, as some of the core characteristics of autism may overlap with intellectual disability. Individuals with Down syndrome and co-occurring autism tend to have more severe rigid and repetitive behaviors and greater challenges with social communication than do individuals with Down syndrome alone. However, the degree to which symptoms can be attributed to each condition remains understudied.

 
 

7/27/2022

Decline in looking at faces may signal onset of autism in infants

By Devon Gangi, Assistant Project Scientist, Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences

A new study from UC Davis Mind Institute supports earlier findings that children who were diagnosed with autism at age 3 had a decreased level of eye gaze as infants compared to children without autism. This gives new insights into development trajectories and may help children get identified earlier.

 
 

7/27/2022

Developing innovative methods to study the human genome

Medium or large changes to the genome are called structural variations (SVs). SVs are tied to many different diseases and conditions. Researchers at UC Davis Mind Institute are developing new models to understand and study SVs.

 
 

7/27/2022

The role of maternal autoantibody exposure in brain development and behavior in autism

By Matthew Bruce

A recent collaborative effort by MIND Institute Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities Research Center (IDDRC) investigators Judy Van de Water, Jill Silverman, and Jacqueline Crawley, as well as researchers from Canada and the United Kingdom, used an animal model to evaluate the effects maternal autoantibodies on offspring brain development.

 
 

7/25/2022

Project TAPP Now Offering Professional Development for Teaching Teams at No Cost

Texas A&M University's Project TAPP is excited to provide professional development for teacher and paraprofessional teams working with students with autism spectrum disorder. Participants will receive two-days of PD workshops in autism and. related interventions and follow-up support during the school year.

 
 

7/14/2022

The Story Behind Maternal Autoantibody Related Autism (MARA)

During pregnancy, twenty-three percent of mothers of children diagnosed with autism had the presence of "autoantibodies" that can attach to proteins in a developing fetus's brain, compared to less than one percent of mothers whose children do not have autism. The UC Davis MIND Institute Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities Research Center (IDDRC) used a new technology to examine specific patterns of these autoantibodies and their effects and found that all eight antibody patterns were associated with an outcome of autism in a child. The hope is that testing for Maternal Autoantibody Related Austim (MARA) autoantibody patterns can be used to assess the likelihood of a child having autism, in order to help families to prepare for supports and services their child may need.

 
 

7/7/2022

Developing Digital Telehealth Assessments for Autism: Increasing access to early identification

While autism is becoming better understood, families do not always get prompt referral to appropriate services. Using video telecommunication technologies such as Zoom, families are able to connect with experts and access autism evaluations from their own homes. Importantly, developing a telehealth-based assessment for autism will increase access for families in rural and low-resourced areas.Researchers at UC Davis Mind Institute(an AUCD network member) developed a telehealth early evaluation system to screen infants for autism. They hope to increase access for families in rural and low-resourced areas. Read more

 
 

6/17/2022

Four Vanderbilt Kennedy Center (TN IDDRC, UCEDD, LEND) TRIAD Practices Accepted into AMCHP Innovations Hub; One selected as award-winner

Four best practices emerging from the Vanderbilt Kennedy Center's (TN IDDRC, UCEDD, LEND) Treatment and Research Institute for Autism Spectrum Disorders (VKC TRIAD) were accepted into the Association of Maternal & Child Health Programs (AMCHP) Innovations Hub Database. The Hub is an online platform that provides maternal and child health professionals and advocates with a variety of resources, including a searchable repository of "what's working" in the maternal and child health field.

 
 

6/17/2022

Inclusive Pre-K Classrooms: Unlocking Potential

Ms. Diane Appel, Dr. Rebecca Landa, Ms. Shay Roemmich and Ms. Carrie Zetlmeisl were awarded funding from the Maryland State Department of Education for the Prekindergarten Expansion Grant Program at Kennedy Krieger Institute's Center for Autism and Related Disorders. This was one of only 50 grants awarded in a pool of 150 applicants for the 2022-2023 school year and we are thrilled that it enables us to further our mission of equity, diversity and inclusion at CARD

 
 

6/17/2022

The Center for Autism and Related Disorders at Kennedy Krieger Institute Kicks off Meaningful Conversations with Autistic Self-Advocates

The Center for Autism and Related Disorders at Kennedy Krieger Institute kicked off monthly Meaningful Conversations with autistic self-advocates on June 8, 2022. In the inaugural session, our guest was Ms. Katelyn Szymanski. Ms. Szymanski is a Behavior Associate at Itineris in Baltimore, MD, and has just completed undergraduate training in social work.

 
 
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