ASF Awards Two New Accelerator Grants

This week, the Autism Science Foundation awarded two accelerator grants to researchers who sought additional funding to speed up their work, expand the project in some way, or make the study more efficient.  The goal of our accelerator grant mechanism is to get important information for families faster. 

Dr. Antoinette Sabatino DiCriscio
Dr. Antoinette Sabatino DiCriscio from the Geisinger Institute in Pennsylvania will investigate how the pupil's response to light changes in people with autism with a known genetic mutation. This might eventually lead not just to a biomarker for autism, but a new biological measure of symptom severity.
Dr. John Strang

Dr. John Strang from Children's National Medical Center inWashington, DC is using accelerator funding to turn his study of two different autism interventions focusing on executive function in adolescents into a longitudinal study. He will be following these children for an extra four months to look at the longer term effects of the intervention, and to assess results at home and in school.

ASF Works with Medical Communities to Improve Collection of Brain Tissue for Research

The Autism Science Foundation is engaging multiple medical
Dr. Manuel Casanova and ASF Chief Science Officer Dr. Alycia Halladay at the 93rd Annual Meeting of the American Association of Neuropathologists
communities in an effort to more effectively collect brain tissue for research. Through the ASF partnership with the Autism BrainNet (ABN), two important meetings were held to better engage both medical examiners and neuropathologists in autism research.

On May 25th, a group of medical examiners met in NY to provide specific recommendations for how the Autism BrainNet can be more effective in working with these doctors to identify brain tissue for donation.

In addition, on June 8th, over 300 neuropathologists met for their annual meeting in Los Angeles, where they received continuing medical education credit for 
Dr. Matthew State
attending an afternoon symposium on the cellular and structural changes associated with autism in the brain. Tissue researcher Dr. Manuel Casanova shared the most recent findings on the neuropathological features of ASD. ASF Scientific Advisory Board Chair Dr. Matthew State spoke about how genes contributed to the shape and connection of neurons in the brain and Dr.  Matthew Anderson, Director of the ABN Node in  Boston, spoke about recent advances in autism r esearch thanks to the study of brain tissue research.

Click here to hear more about th ese meetings on the June 12th podcast .

Click here  to receive more information from the Autism BrainNet, including regular updates on scientific findings from ABN and how they impact families affected by ASD.
ASF Welcomes New Science Relations Associate

Sonia Agarwal joins the Autism Science Foundation for the summer as a Science Relations Associate. She is a rising junior at New York University studying Applied Psychology, and we are very excited to work with her. Welcome, Sonia!
"Why I Ride" by Paul Morris

I have been so proud to work with the Autism Science Foundation since it was launched in 2009. As an adult with autism, I think it's very important to support research, because research will give us important answers about what causes autism and how best to provide support to people with autism.

That's why I am so excited to be involved with Wall Street Rides FAR - For Autism Research.

On Saturday, October 7, 2017 the autism and Wall Street communities will come together for this annual bike ride that is truly for everyone. With four scenic options to choose from (4, 20, 30 or 62 miles), there is a route for you whether you are a seasoned cyclist or a recreational weekend rider like me. The family-friendly 4-mile route (with an 8-mile option) makes it possible for younger children to ride, including children with autism.

As many of you know, my family and I have been raising money for autism research for many years. We are proud to support ASF because we know the funds we raise will support the most cutting-edge, important research that will make real changes in people's lives. For example, the Autism Science Foundation sponsors the Autism Sisters Project, which is trying to learn about why more males than females are diagnosed with autism. My sister Sabrina, my brothers and I are all participating in this study. If we can understand why girls seem to have protection against autism we can use that information to help both boys and girls.

I will help kick off the ride this year as a speaker at the Rooftop Kick-Off Party on Wednesday, June 21st at Rare View in Chelsea. I hope you can join me and my family there! In addition to a great time, you will get a chance to learn more about the research being funded by ASF and get details on the Ride! I hope to see you there!

To learn more about these events and to RSVP for the kickoff party, click here. It's full of information on the Ride and is the best place to register and get up to date on the latest events.

I hope to see you at the ride!