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Archived News

2017

National Institutes of Health
September 7, 2017
The National Institutes of Health has awarded nine research grants totaling nearly $100 million over the next five years for the Autism Centers of Excellence (ACE), a program that supports large research projects aimed at understanding and developing interventions for autism spectrum disorder (ASD).
Administration for Community Living
July 10, 2017
ACL's Administration for Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities recently awarded five-year grants to 42 University Centers for Excellence in Developmental Disabilities (UCEDDs). The UCEDDs will receive a total of $22,974,000 a year to address issues, find solutions, and advance research in order to improve the lives of people with developmental disabilities and their families.
National Institutes of Health
June 7, 2017
Functional connectivity magnetic resonance imaging (fcMRI) scans may predict which high risk, 6 month old infants will develop autism by age 2 years.
National Institutes of Health
June 1, 2017
In a twin study, researchers found that baby teeth from individuals with autism contain higher levels of lead and low levels of nutrients.
AHRQ Press Release
May 26, 2017
Sensory-focused interventions – such as massage, swinging and trampoline exercises and exposure to different textures – reduced sensory and motor impairments in children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD), according to an analysis funded by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ), highlighted today in the journal Pediatrics. Meanwhile, an additional AHRQ-supported article in Pediatrics concluded that little evidence currently exists to support the use of nutritional supplements or gluten-free/casein-free diets to improve autistic behaviors in children.
AHRQ Blog – by Dr. David Myers
May 26, 2017
The mysteries and impacts of autism continue to challenges us all ... I am pleased to report, however, that two new research reports from AHRQ provide important updates about what tactics are known to be effective—and not effective—in managing ASD behaviors.
Thomas E. Price, M.D., HHS Secretary
Friday, April 28, 2017
HHS recommits to supporting Americans living with autism and their families.
Dr. Joshua Gordon, Director, NIMH and Chair, Interagency Autism Coordinating Committee
Wednesday, April 26, 2017
In recognition of Autism Awareness Month, I am highlighting NIMH’s efforts at improving understanding of autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and developing effective interventions and supports for individuals with ASD.
April 26, 2017
Neuroscientists have created a 3D window into the human brain’s budding executive hub assembling itself during a critical period in prenatal development.
Robin Harwood, Health Scientist and Tom Novotny, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Health
Thursday, April 6, 2017
Based on U.S. Census data and Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) prevalence estimates, over a half million youth with ASD will turn 18 over the next decade.
Dr. Joshua Gordon, Director, NIMH and Chair, Interagency Autism Coordinating Committee
Tuesday, April 4, 2017
Understanding how the brain develops and functions remains among the most difficult of scientific challenges, as is the effort to understand the causes of conditions that alter its function. Among these is autism spectrum disorder (ASD).
President Donald J. Trump
Sunday, April 2, 2017
On World Autism Awareness Day, we highlight the importance of addressing the causes and improving the treatments for autism spectrum disorders (ASDs). We also recognize the importance of identifying ASDs early in a child's life and of understanding the obstacles faced by people living on the autism spectrum.
Secretary-General António Guterres’
Thursday, March 30, 2017
On this World Autism Awareness Day, let us all play a part in changing attitudes towards persons with autism and in recognizing their rights as citizens, who, like everyone else, are entitled to claim those rights and make decisions for their lives in accordance with their own will and preferences.
March 24, 2017
Researchers have discovered a pattern of genetic glitches and behavioral features, such as delayed walking, in some cases of autism spectrum disorder (ASD) that could ultimately lead to identification of subgroups and improved treatment.
Thursday, March 23, 2017
Mark Daly, Ph.D reported that a third of genetic mutations found in individuals with ASD are also found in unaffected people.
February 21, 2017
For children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD), early diagnosis is critical to allow for possible interventions at a time when the brain is most amenable to change. But that’s been tough to implement for a simple reason: the symptoms of ASD, such as communication difficulties, social deficits, and repetitive behaviors, often do not show up until a child turns 2 or even 3 years old.

2016

Ann Griswold
Tuesday, December 13, 2016
It’s been nearly three months since Joshua Gordon took the reins as director of the U.S. National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH). In that time, Gordon has made it clear that one of his top priorities will be ‘circuit science’ — investigations into the clusters of neurons that underlie certain behaviors.
Wednesday, October 26, 2016
Joshua Gordon, M.D, Ph.D., who was appointed as the Director of the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH ) in September 2016, has been appointed as the new Chair of Interagency Autism Coordinating Committee.
August 12, 2016
Schizophrenia, autism risk gene trajectories point to shared causes
Friday, April 15, 2016
Children with autism, like people with all types of disabilities, need opportunities to grow and gain independence.
Friday, April 1, 2016
Every person deserves the chance to reach for their highest hopes and fulfill their greatest potential. On World Autism Awareness Day, we reaffirm our dedication to ensuring that belief is a reality for all those who live on the autism spectrum ‑‑ including 1 in 68 children. And we uphold our obligation to help make sure every man, woman, and child, regardless of ability or background, is accepted for who they are and able to lead a life free from discrimination and filled with opportunity.
Monday, March 21, 2016
The international community is now embarking on the challenge of realizing the ambitious and universal 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. The equal participation and active involvement of persons with autism will be essential for achieving the inclusive societies envisioned by the Sustainable Development Goals
UN World Autism Awareness Event:

2015

November 17, 2015
Two of the world’s largest brain tissue banks unify efforts to collect and distribute a critical number of brain donations for important autism research.
Wednesday, October 28, 2015
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) today announced the appointments of new and returning members to the Interagency Autism Coordinating Committee (IACC), reauthorized under the Autism CARES Act. After an open call for nominations for members of the public to serve on the committee, Secretary of Health and Human Services, Sylvia M. Burwell, appointed this group of individuals to provide her with advice to advance research, strengthen services, and increase opportunities for people on the autism spectrum. Read more
July 16, 2015
James McPartland, Ph.D. of Yale University will lead a new four-year $28 million Biomarkers Consortium project that aims to improve clinical evaluation of treatments for social impairment in children with autism.
April 28, 2015
Study after study has found no link between autism spectrum disorders (ASD) and the measles-mumps-rubella (MMR) vaccine—or any vaccine for that matter. Yet many parents still refuse or delay vaccinations for their young children based on misplaced fear of ASD, which can be traced back to a small 1998 study that’s since been debunked and retracted.
April 3, 2015
Dr. Insel describes recent accomplishments related to autism spectrum disorder over the past year—from the reauthorization of the Interagency Autism Coordinating Committee to promising therapeutic results from clinical trials.
Thursday, April 2, 2015
United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon today launched a Call to Action inviting businesses to make concrete commitments to employ persons with autism. Read more
Thursday, April 2, 2015
In this blog, IACC Chair Dr. Insel discusses some of the most recent research advances and initiatives that have taken place in the autism field. Read more
Thursday, April 2, 2015
On World Autism Awareness Day, our Nation recognizes all those around the globe who live on the autism spectrum. We celebrate the countless ways they strengthen our communities and enrich our world — and we reaffirm their fundamental rights to participate fully in society, live with respect, and achieve their greatest potential. Read more

2014

Wednesday, October 1, 2014
On August 8, 2014, President Obama signed the Autism Collaboration, Accountability, Research, Education and Support (CARES) Act of 2014 (PDF – 256 KB) into law, reauthorizing and expanding the provisions of the Combating Autism Act of 2006
(PDF – 142 KB). Read more
Wednesday, September 10, 2014
Developing effective, real-world-ready approaches to providing early diagnosis, treatment, and supportive services for people with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is the goal of 12 research grants awarded by the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH).
Friday, August 8, 2014
The Autism CARES Act of 2014, which reauthorizes the Combating Autism Act, continues important investments in research, prevalence monitoring and services for both children and adults on the autism spectrum. Read more
Wednesday, July 2, 2014
The Department of Health and Human Services today announced the appointments of Wendy Chung, M.D., Ph.D. and Robert Ring, Ph.D., as public members of the Interagency Autism Coordinating Committee (IACC), a federal advisory Committee composed of federal agency officials and appointed community stakeholders that provides coordination and a forum for public input on issues related to autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Read more
Wednesday, April 30, 2014
The Interagency Autism Coordinating Committee (IACC) has released its 2013 Strategic Plan Update, which provides an overview of funding and scientific advances made in autism research since 2009, when the IACC Strategic Plan for ASD Research was first published. Read more
Thursday, April 17, 2014
The Interagency Autism Coordinating Committee (IACC) has published its selections for the twenty most significant studies in the field of autism spectrum disorder (ASD) research in 2013. Read more | Summary of Advances
Wednesday, April 2, 2014
Today, on World Autism Awareness Day 2014, the Interagency Autism Coordinating Committee (IACC) issued a statement regarding the scientific, practice, and policy implications of changes in the diagnostic criteria for Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) that were made in the most recent update of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM). Read more
Wednesday, April 2, 2014
World Autism Awareness Day is about more than generating understanding; it is a call to action. I urge all concerned to take part in fostering progress by supporting education programmes, employment opportunities and other measures that help realize our shared vision of a more inclusive world. Read more
Tuesday, April 1, 2014
Each year, people across the globe take time to recognize the millions of people living on the autism spectrum, including 1 out of every 68 American children. Americans with autism contribute to all aspects of society and are an essential thread in the diverse tapestry of our Nation. On World Autism Awareness Day, we offer our support and respect to all those on the autism spectrum. Read more
Thursday, March 27, 2014
In this blog, IACC Chair Dr. Insel discusses what we have learned from the most recent CDC prevalence update and the developmental neurobiology of autism. Read more

2013

Monday, September 30, 2013
The U.S. Department of Education awarded more than $211 million in five-year grants to five states and a consortium of six states to establish and operate model demonstration projects designed to improve the education and employment outcomes of child Supplemental Security Income (SSI) recipients and their families.
Tuesday, April 9, 2013
The Interagency Autism Coordinating Committee (IACC) has published its selections for the twenty most significant studies in the field of autism spectrum disorder (ASD) research in 2012. Read more | Summary of Advances
Tuesday, April 2, 2013
Today, public health officials estimate that 1 in every 88 children in America is growing up on the autism spectrum. It is a reality that affects millions of families every day, from the classroom to the job market. Read more
Tuesday, April 2, 2013
Every April during National Autism Awareness Month, we recognize the special challenges faced by those living with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) and refocus our efforts on the best ways to support them and their families. Read more
Tuesday, April 2, 2013
World Autism Awareness Day has succeeded in calling greater international attention to autism and other developmental disorders that affect millions of people worldwide. Read more
Tuesday, April 2, 2013
A growing number of countries are heralding a new call for involvement in addressing autism and other developmental disorders that affect millions of individuals and their families and societies worldwide as the United Nations and communities around the globe mark World Autism Awareness Day on 2 April. Read more
Monday, March 25, 2013
Today the Interagency Autism Coordinating Committee (IACC) submitted a letter to the Secretary of Health and Human Services, Kathleen Sebelius, recommending public and private insurance coverage of early behavioral interventions for children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Read more
Tuesday, February 26, 2013
This blog, by Dr. Thomas Insel, Chair of the IACC, discusses four distinct perspectives or "kingdoms" that characterize different aspects and needs of the autism community and that present challenges in finding a way to recognize differences while working together toward the common goal of improving the lives of children and adults on the spectrum and their families. Read more
Monday, February 4, 2013
The Interagency Autism Coordinating Committee (IACC) has released its Strategic Plan for Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) Research – 2012 Update.  The 2012 Strategic Plan Update provides an update on recent developments in each of the seven critical research areas outlined in the 2011 IACC Strategic Plan for ASD Research, including screening and diagnosis, the underlying biology of ASD, risk factors, treatments and interventions, services, lifespan issues, and surveillance and infrastructure. Read more

2012

Wednesday, December 26, 2012
Every year the Interagency Autism Coordinating Committee (IACC) updates its Strategic Plan for Autism Spectrum Disorder Research, identifying progress and new opportunities across the range of autism spectrum disorder (ASD) research. Each year this task gets more difficult. In 2012, the speed of progress was so rapid that each draft of the Plan was out of date by the time the IACC reviewed it. The sheer volume of research was overwhelming. According to PubMed, there were over 1,000 ASD papers related to genetics or brain imaging since January 2011 – more than three times the number of papers from the same interval a decade ago. Read more
Friday, December 21, 2012
The events of December 14 in Newtown, Connecticut shocked and saddened people worldwide. All of the members of the IACC express our deepest sympathy and support for the families and community affected by these terrible killings. Some news reports suggested the gunman had Asperger syndrome, an autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Because this tragic event has shaken so many, the IACC wants to ensure that continued speculation about the gunman's diagnosis does not hurt others in the community. Our committee has collectively prepared this statement to address public concerns and questions about the implied association between autism and extreme violence directed at others. Read more
Monday, May 21, 2012
There are so many reasons not to share scientific data – in industry, among academics, and even for some patients. For pharmaceutical companies, data are usually considered proprietary, with sharing limited by intellectual property rules. Research and development is a competitive process with success defined by being the first to bring a lucrative product to market. In universities, research is no less competitive. Scientific success in universities is built around attaining tenure through individual promotion and publications. Read more
Wednesday, April 4, 2012
Last week's autism news was about prevalence. The CDC reported a 78 percent increase in autism prevalence since 2002. This week's autism news is about genetics—three papers in Nature describe new genes associated with autism. For many people, these two stories seem contradictory or, at best, unrelated. Increasing prevalence suggests environmental factors like chemicals and microbes changing over the past decade, whereas genes change over generations. Why is anyone looking for genetic causes when there is such a rapid increase in prevalence? Shouldn't every research dollar be invested in finding the environmental culprit rather than searching for rare gene variants? Read more
Monday, April 2, 2012
On April 2, in honor of the fifth annual World Autism Awareness Day and HHS Autism Awareness Month the IACC has released its annual list of scientific advances that represent significant progress in the field. Read more | Summary of Advances
Monday, April 2, 2012
In April, we recognize National Autism Awareness Month and the special challenges faced by those with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD). Read more
Monday, April 2, 2012
Autism is not limited to a single region or a country; it is a worldwide challenge that requires global action. Read more
Thursday, March 29, 2012
The Department of Health and Human Services today announced the names of the fifteen individuals invited to participate as public members of the newly reauthorized Interagency Autism Coordinating Committee (IACC). The diverse group invited by HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius to join the IACC includes three autism self-advocates, several parents of affected children, a practicing developmental pediatrician, and several researchers, and leaders of autism services and research organizations. Many of the nominated individuals serve dual roles, dedicating their professional careers to autism because of a family member with the disorder. National advocacy organizations represented by the invited individuals include Autism Speaks, Simons Foundation, Autism Science Foundation, the Autistic Self Advocacy Network, SafeMinds, and the Somali American Autism Foundation. Read more
Thursday, March 29, 2012
Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Kathleen Sebelius announced today that she has invited 15 individuals to serve as public members on the Interagency Autism Coordinating Committee (IACC). Read more
Thursday, March 29, 2012
Autism is always surprising. Earlier today, the CDC released new numbers from their ongoing surveillance of autism prevalence, the Autism and Developmental Disability Monitoring (ADDM) Network. What was once considered a rare disorder is now reported as affecting 1 in 88 children, 1 in 54 boys. These new numbers, up 78 percent from 2002 and 23 percent from 2006, raise immediate questions. Are more children affected or more detected? Does the increase reflect a growing problem—an epidemic—or do these new numbers reflect an improvement in our ability to diagnose and serve those affected? Read more

2011

Friday, October 28, 2011
On September 30, 2011, President Obama signed the Combating Autism Reauthorization Act (CARA) into law, ensuring that all vital Federal autism research and services programs would continue without disruption and allowing the Interagency Autism Coordinating Committee (IACC) to carry on its work until 2014. Read more
Monday, July 11, 2011
Testifying before the U.S. House of Representatives Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Health on July 11, Dr. Thomas Insel spoke about the Combating Autism Act of 2006 and the successful federal coordination and public-private partnership efforts that have resulted from the Interagency Autism Coordinating Committee (IACC) that was created as part of the legislation. Read more
Monday, May 23, 2011
The tenth annual International Meeting for Autism Research (IMFAR) held May 12 – 14 in San Diego, California, attracted nearly 2,000 researchers, advocates, autism specialists, and students from across the globe. Read more
Monday, April 28, 2011
The White House held a conference to celebrate Autism Awareness month on April 25, 2011, gathering research experts, health professionals, advocates, and families to share their ideas on speeding progress in the field and meeting the complex needs of people on the spectrum and their families. Read more
Friday, April 1, 2011
April is Autism Awareness Month. Each year this is a good time to take stock of progress. The Interagency Autism Coordinating Committee (IACC) published its annual Summary of Advances in Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) Research today and recently posted the annual update of its Strategic Plan for ASD Research. Read more
Friday, April 1, 2011
In celebration of World Autism Awareness Day, the IACC has released its list of the top twenty scientific advances in autism spectrum disorder (ASD) research for 2010. Read more | Summary of Advances
February 28, 2011
The Interagency Autism Coordinating Committee (IACC) has released its 2011 Strategic Plan for Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) Research, which is intended to provide a blueprint for future ASD research efforts. Read more
February 28, 2011
Ms. Idil Abdull spoke with conviction as she addressed the Interagency Autism Coordinating Committee (IACC) in October 2010, "If you want to know the answer to autism, come and study us. This is your gold mine," said the Somali mother of a child with autism and founder of the Somali American Autism Foundation. Read more

2010

Friday, April 30, 2010
The Interagency Autism Coordinating Committee (IACC) is announcing the addition of five new public members appointed by the Secretary of Health and Human Services, Kathleen Sebelius. Read more
Friday, April 30, 2010
Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius announced today the appointment of five new members to the Interagency Autism Coordinating Committee (IACC), a federal advisory committee created in an effort to accelerate progress in autism spectrum disorder (ASD) research and services. Read more
Friday, April 2, 2010
In conjunction with the United Nations (UN) designated "World Autism Awareness Day" on April 2, the IACC announced its selection of twenty scientific advances in biomedical and services research for 2009. Read more | Summary of Advances
Thursday, April 1, 2010
During National Autism Awareness Month, we reflect on an urgent public health challenge and rededicate ourselves to addressing the complex needs of people with autism and their families. Read more
Wednesday, February 3, 2010
The first update to the Interagency Autism Coordinating Committee (IACC) strategic plan for autism research received unanimous approval from the 19-member advisory group that drafted the recommendations. The IACC, created under the Combating Autism Act (CAA) of 2006, finalized the 2010 Plan at their meeting on January 19, 2010. Read more

2009

Thursday, April 2, 2009
"It is with profound commitment to Americans with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD), their families, and their communities that I join in celebrating World Autism Day. We celebrate the contributions of individuals with autism, their families, and self-advocates across the World." Read more
Thursday, March 5, 2009
The Interagency Autism Coordinating Committee (IACC), a federal government advisory panel, has released its first blueprint for autism research. The IACC Strategic Plan for Autism Spectrum Disorder Research will advise federal agencies and Congress on needs and opportunities for research investigating autism, a complex developmental disorder that affects 1 in 150 children. Read more

2007

Tuesday, November 27, 2007
HHS Secretary Mike Leavitt announced today the members appointed to the Department of Health and Human Services' new Interagency Autism Coordinating Committee. This committee coordinates efforts within the department to combat autism spectrum disorder through research, screening, intervention, and education. Read more
 
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