News & Events

April 23, 2018

Cannabis May Have Therapeutic Benefit for Autism, Should Have Fewer Federal Restrictions

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the World Heath Organization (WHO) are now reviewing whether to remove cannabis from the Schedule I Controlled Substance List. Since cannabis may have potential as a therapeutic for people with autism, SafeMinds has submitted comments to the FDA in support of reassigning cannabis to a less restricted […]

April 23, 2018

SafeMinds Comments to FDA on Cannabis & Autism

Controlled Substance Staff Center for Drug Evaluation and Research Food and Drug Administration 10903 New Hampshire Ave., Bldg. 51, Rm. 5150 Silver Spring, MD 20993-0002 RE: Docket No. FDA-2018-N-1072 for “International Drug Scheduling; Convention on Psychotropic Substances; Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs; Cannabis Plant and Resin; Extracts and Tinctures of Cannabis; Delta-9-Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC); Stereoisomers of […]

April 23, 2018

Two Treatments with Positive Results and the High Cost of Autism

Two abstracts being presented this week at the annual conference of the American Academy of Neurology report positive outcomes from two treatments for autism. A third article on healthcare utilization reports double the cost for adults with autism. A MitoCocktail was tested in eleven children with autism and mitocondrial (mt) dysfunction. Mt dysfunction is common in autism. The MitoCocktail contained carnitine, coenzyme Q10 and alpha-lipoic acid. Investigators Craig Newschaffer and colleagues at Drexel University conclude: “This small pilot study supports the hypothesis that in ASD MitoCocktail may have a therapeutic benefit, improving mt function and maladaptive behavior and speech. Larger placebo-controlled trials are needed to demonstrate efficacy.”

April 13, 2018

Help Find the Causes of Autism through the National Birth Defects Registry

The non-profit Birth Defect Research for Children maintains a registry of thousands of children with birth defects. Through a questionnaire completed by parents, the organization is helping to link pre-conception and pre-natal exposures of parents with disabilities in their children. Autism is one condition they focus on. Parents of a child with autism can help identify pre-birth risk factors for autism by completing a registry questionnaire. Autism parents may not think of autism or a developmental disability as a “birth defect”, and some parents may feel that the cause of their child’s autism happens from exposures after birth, i.e., in early childhood, or is due to genetics. However, the research from this registry is applicable to autism and to cases that might have a genetic or a childhood exposure component.

April 12, 2018

IACC Public Comments

Provided by Lisa Wiederlight, Executive Director, SafeMinds April 19, 2018 It is my pleasure to speak to you and the members of the IACC on behalf of SafeMinds, a national nonprofit organization focused on ending the autism epidemic by promoting environmental research and effective treatments. A group of parents dedicated to identifying the environmental causes […]

April 12, 2018

Long Term Functional Improvement from an Achievable Diet and Nutrition Protocol

A new study by researchers at multiple universities has found that a comprehensive dietary and nutritional regimen is effective at reducing symptoms of autism, increasing functioning level and reducing associated gastrointestinal (GI) problems. The regimen is safe, uses readily available products, and can be implemented by the average family. Lead investigator James Adams of Arizona State University and colleagues tested a combination of supplementation with vitamins and minerals, essential fatty acids, sulfate through epsom salt baths, carnitine, and digestive enzymes, as well as a “healthy” diet. The creation of the treatment protocol was based on prior research showing effectiveness of each of the components individually. This study was the first to test them as a combined treatment over a period of one year. The goal was to determine if the components together would have an even greater positive effect than that reported for each individually. Another goal was to measure the effects of the diet and nutrition protocol over a longer period of time, as these types of interventions may take longer to show an effect than a standard drug.

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