News & Events

March 19, 2020

Dealing with the Coronavirus Emergency For Autism Families

Let’s face it, we are living in unprecedented times. The threat of coronavirus (COVID-19) has disrupted normal life in ways most people would never think possible. Fully functional individuals are full of worry about easing the risk of illness for their families. Add a family member with a disability into the mix, and anxiety is likely to reach sky high. Especially since the CDC recognizes that those with neurological and neurodevelopment conditions [including disorders of the brain, epilepsy (seizure disorders), intellectual disability, and moderate to severe developmental delay] may have an increased risk of serious illness due to COVID-19.

March 09, 2020

Exposure to Phthalates During Pregnancy Associated with Autism Traits

Despite a several decades long rise in prevalence, the cause or causes of autism spectrum disorder (ASD) still remain largely unknown. For years, researchers have primarily pointed a finger towards genetic reasons. However, a dramatic increase in a disorder, like the one exhibited in autism, shows that it becomes less likely that genetics are solely responsible. Researchers have begun to turn to environmental exposures as a likely culprit explaining part of the increase in rates.

February 28, 2020

Duquesne University Research Team Sets Lofty Goal of Stopping Autism Pathology as it Develops

CBS 2 in Pittsburgh reports on innovative autism research coming from Duquesne University, which has just announced a biomarker test developed to identify children in the process of developing autism, possibly stopping the progression before their brain pathology worsens. In the future, this test may even help identify newborns at risk of developing the disorder.

February 28, 2020

Autism & Sleep Troubles: A Critical Concern and Least Studied Feature of the Spectrum

Ask any parent raising a child with autism about their daily challenges, a list will be produced fairly quick. Whether it is dealing with picky eating, rigid dressing and grooming routines, self-stimulatory behaviors, echolalia or all the above; managing these autism related issues takes an enormous amount of patience and dedication to remaining calm. By the end of the day, most parents are ready for peace, quiet and most of all rest. However, the respite that these parents desperately need is unlikely to easily occur.

February 11, 2020

What Leads to the Good Life for Autistic Adults? Nobody Knows.

Lack of Systems-Level Evidence Hampers Progress in Service Delivery: People with autism live most of their lives as adults, yet almost all research – 98% – has been done on children. And what meager research on adult outcomes exists has generally focused on the individual or family – on skill development or caregiving approaches, for example. Yet studies on health challenges across many fields have shown that community- or systems-level capacities – the services offered, innovation in programs, case coordination, financing – are vital components to achieving sufficient quality of life. Surprisingly, there are few studies evaluating programs and services for autistic adults, reports a new study.

February 10, 2020

Horseback Riding Therapy for Autism Given a Boost

Hefty NIH Grant Approved for Colorado Researcher Studying Why Therapeutic Riding Benefits Autism: The University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus announced that CU researcher Robin Gabriels has received a Federal grant to study the reasons why therapeutic horseback riding (THR) is effective for children with autism. The grant follows studies by Gabriels showing THR improves irritability, hyperactivity, and social communication skills, and that the effect lasts at least 6 months after the riding stops.

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