From July, 2011

Prenatal Exposure to Antidepressants and Autism Spectrum Disorders

Participants were identified via the Kaiser Permanente Medical Care Program in Northern California. A total of 298 children with ASD and 1,507 children with typical development were included in the study. Pharmacy records were used to determine maternal antidepressant usage during the year prior to delivery (i.e., the 3 months prior to conception and throughout the gestational period). Antidepressants were classified into three groups: SSRIs, dual-action antidepressants, and tri-cyclic antidepressants.

Center for Autism Ranked in Top Three Non-Governmental Organizations Providing Largest Financial Support to Autism Research

The Center for Autism and Related Disorders, Inc. (CARD), has been named one of the top three largest non-governmental financial supporters of autism research in the United States, and the only for-profit organization in the top three-tier ranking. The research findings come from the U.S Department of Health and Human Services’ Interagency Autism Coordinating Committee (IACC), whose mission is to provide 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.


Joe Mohs, who recovered from infantile autism as a small child, led the second half of the evening by telling the inspirational story of his triumph over the condition. Joe led a question and answer session where he spoke about his personal experience with autism, his devoted family, the life-transforming ABA program as well as his life, work and social relationships after recovery. “It’s is not a cure or a remedy,” Joe said while defining the term autism recovery, “it’s an intensive process that requires personal commitment and sacrifice, not only during your child’s treatment program but throughout his or her life.” Joe’s heartfelt words left the audience with a profound, positive impact and a strong sense of hope for their children. At end of the meeting, the audience was informed about how their children can benefit greatly from Skills™, the online autism treatment and training program, and CARD eLearning™.

The Autspot

It’s amazing how some of the most helpful ideas come from the people that actually need them the most. Just 17 years ago, my 20 year old cousin, Matthew, was diagnosed with a somewhat rare and misunderstood disorder called autism. At that time, Matthew was one of the 2,500 children in the United States with autism, which was a developmental disability that nobody in my family knew very much about. Through research and doctor’s visits we were able to find our way, but throughout his adolescence, we could only wish to receive the support, knowledge, and motivation from other families in our situation. Back then, autism diagnosis was just too few and far between for us to get the necessary resources and community involvement that we needed. It was not until Matthew was a young adult that the prevalence of autism started taking such an abrupt increase in numbers around the world, and an active autism community of families, researchers, and organizations began to take shape.

Genetics versus Environment in Autism Spectrum Disorders

Potential participants were identified through the California Department of Developmental Services (DDS). Both identical and fraternal twin pairs were eligible to participate if they were born between 1987 and 2004, and at least one twin was reported to have an ASD diagnosis. A total of 1,156 twin pairs were identified through the DDS, however, due to limited participation from families, only 202 twin pairs were included in the study. All participants received comprehensive diagnostic evaluations to confirm diagnoses of autistic disorder or broader ASD.

Educators Sign Up For Skills At International Conference

Last week, educators from around the world attended the 2011 International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE) conference in Philadelphia. Conference organizers say more 17,000 people were in attendance to see, touch, and learn about products and services from more than five hundred of the top education technology companies in the world. Many of the attendees visited the Skills™ exhibit area to learn about the web-based product to effectively design and manage a comprehensive, individualized treatment program for children with autism and related disorders.

What is ABA? Discrete Trial Training

The EIBI group of 40 hours or more a week gained an average of 20 IQ points over the two year period and 47 percent of these children reached average intellectual functioning, whereas the other groups showed no significant change in IQ level. This does not mean that DTT is a successful method for every individual with autism, but does work very well for the majority.