Much of the effort of the Autism Treatment Research Laboratory is conducted in collaboration with three other laboratories at IBR: the Neurobehavioral Development Laboratory and Neurophysiological Development Laboratory, which have found some very novel and exciting data regarding the increased risk of autism in premature babies, and the Morphometry Laboratory, whose Autism Brain Tissue Program is undertaking an in-depth stereologic examination of the subcortical structures of autism brains in comparison to matched control brains.
The primary work of this laboratory is the creation of the New York State Autism Consortium, which will provide a statewide vehicle for the participation of many institutions in advancing scientific research and clinical interventions in prevention and treatment of autism spectrum disorders. The projects spearheaded by the Consortium will include both large collaborative projects as well as the facilitation of smaller pilot studies in preparation for larger projects.
The following projects have already commenced: plans for an autism tissue bank in collaboration with Columbia University and New York University, a longitudinal study of a population-based birth cohort, and a study of the role of using physiologic parameters to enhance educational programming for children with autism spectrum disorders.
Other research activities of our laboratory include the following:
- Recruitment of subjects for a multi-site national study of the efficacy of risperidone in the treatment of children and adolescents with autistic disorder, and
- A study of a biologically based behavioral intervention to reduce hearing sensitivities and normalize autonomic functioning in autism.