News & Events

April 09, 2020

Maryland Legislation Requires Phase Out of Toxic Pesticide Tied to Autism

A bill requiring a ban on the insecticide chlorpyrifos passed both legislative houses1 in Maryland. Maryland joins other states 2 including California, New Jersey, Connecticut and Oregon with plans to forbid the substance. The state bans are welcome news for future children since chlorpyrifos has been linked to lower IQ and neurodevelopmental issues, including autism.

April 09, 2020

Positive Results from a Microbiome Treatment Trial for Autism

Results of a novel microbial-inspired drug study look promising at reducing the core symptoms of autism. Adolescents with the condition had lowered scores on irritability, anxiety and social withdrawal while on the medication. The drug, called AB-2004, works on the gut-brain axis. Communication between the bacteria in the gut and the brain impacts the way the brain develops and functions as well as behavior.

April 08, 2020

Tools From UNC & ARI to Support Individuals with Autism During COVID-19

With more than 90% of all Americans currently under stay at home orders due to COVID-19, families are rapidly adapting to a highly unusual way of living. Almost everyone’s schedule has been disrupted. Students are now attending classes over the internet. Parents are working from home. Gym classes and social engagements take place over Zoom. Even medical appointments are occurring remotely through telehealth and telemedicine technology.

April 02, 2020

Robots Could Improve Socialization Skills for Children with Autism

A small robot, shaped like a bird, is perched on a desk in front of a child with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). While the child plays math games on a tablet, the friendly bird provides instruction and feedback–essentially coaching the child until each computer game is completed. This scenario is not a new plot line from an upcoming science fiction film.

April 02, 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.

April 02, 2020

As Coronavirus Curtails School and Therapy, Parents Can Turn to Exercise Instead

New Study Shows Therapeutic Benefits for Autism – Parents looking for therapeutic activities while their child with autism is home from school and therapists stay away due to the coronavirus outbreak can turn to exercise. A new study shows that physical activity has beneficial effects for core autism symptoms in addition to its benefits for physical health.

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