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A Randomized, Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled, Parallel-Group, Fixed-Dose Study of NNZ-2566 in Fragile X Syndrome

Location: Denver, CO; Atlanta, GA; Chicago, IL; Worcester, MA; New York, NY; Media, PA

This study is to evaluate the safety and tolerability of a 42-day treatment with NNZ-2566 or placebo in adolescent and adult males.

Toddlers with Autism: Developing Opportunities for Learning (TADPOLE)

Location: Seattle, WA

The purpose of this study is to evaluate the effects of intensity of treatment and delivery style on the developmental progress of young children with ASD. To do this, researchers at the University of Washington, Vanderbilt Kennedy Center, and MIND Institute are comparing two versions of one-on-one early intervention for young children with autism: One play-based (ESDM), and one structured, table-top-based (DTT, discrete trial training). Qualifying toddlers who show signs of autism receive one year of in-home intervention and parent coaching, as well as developmental follow-ups throughout the year.

Prevalence of Chiari Malformation Within the ASD Population

Location: Chevy Chase, MD

The purposes of this study are to:

1. To establish the prevalence of Chiari related disorders within the population of ASD
2. To develop clinical biomarkers to more readily select which patients within the ASD population need further evaluation
3. To determine in a randomized, prospective manner whether surgical correction of these established neurological disorders provides a significant improvement in neurological function, pain and quality of life in the affected children and adults.

Navigating and Framing the Education and Identity of ASD Kids Within the Structure of Public Schools: Parents as Caretakers, Interpreters and Advocates

Location: San Francisco Bay Area

The purpose of this study is to explore the different ways different types of parents navigate and advocate their ASD child’s rights within the structure of public education

A Survey Analysis of Parents of Children Diagnosed with Autism Perception and Utilization of Social Stories

Location: Online Survey

The purpose of this survey is to evaluate how commonly parents are implementing social stories to their children diagnosed with an autism spectrum disorder, the perceived effectiveness of the social story procedure, and their opinions about the research on social stories. Our hope is that we get a better information about how the social story is being implemented among parents of the autism community as well as how parents interpret the empirical evidence on social stories. The survey will be blind to the evaluators although we have an option for the person filling out the survey to give us information for a chance to win a free visa gift card. This information will not be given to those evaluating the survey results.

Social Media and Teens with ASD

Location: Online Study

This research study is being conducted to identify specific coping strategies that adolescents with ASD use when faced with social challenges on social media websites. In addition, this research will examine how the level of self-integration of an adolescent’s ASD diagnosis into his/her identity impacts the choice of coping behavior.

Upon completion of the study, participants will have the opportunity to enter an email address for a chance to win a $50 Target gift card.

Autism: Beliefs and Cures

Location: Online Study

The purpose of this study is to explore how parents of children with autism conceive of the disorder, and the facets of their experience that influence their decision to pursue complementary and alternative medicine in their child’s course of treatment. 

Identity as a Mediator between Stereotype Threat and Stigma on Postsecondary Outcomes for Individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorders

Location: Online Survey

Postsecondary school outcomes for individuals with ASDs, such as education, employment, and psychosocial health, are a great concern to society. Although these individuals continue to demonstrate improvements as they age into adulthood, they also continue to experience challenges in gaining postsecondary education and employment (Levy & Perry, 2011). Previous research has identified several factors which predict positive outcomes; however, wide variation exists even for those whom best outcomes are predicted. This paper combines the psychological framework of stereotype threat with the sociological theory of group stigma to explore how variation within group identity mediates self-esteem, feelings of disability, and postsecondary outcomes of education and employment. This study uses a survey comprised of three established measures to examine self-esteem, feelings and disability, and stigma. An additional survey was created to to identify and explore possible candidate dimensions relating to autism and identity. This study will examine relationships between self-esteem, feelings of disablity, stigma, and identity with level of post-secondary education and employment for adults on the autism spectrum.

Active Duty Military Families with a Child with Special Needs Survey

Location: Online Survey

We have developed a survey to investigate the experiences and needs of military families with a child with special needs. We hope to use these results to improve therapeutic services for military families and their children. Any military spouse of an active duty service member with a child with special needs 4-21 years of age is able to participate. The survey will take approximately 40 minutes to complete.

Coping self-efficacy and social support among caregivers of children and adolescents with developmental disabilities and challenging behaviors

Location: Online Survey

This study will investigate the possible relationship between coping self-efficacy and social support among caregivers of children and adolescents with developmental disabilities and challenging behaviors. From a social cognitive perspective, participants will express their belief about seeking social support when exposed to challenging behaviors from children experiencing developmental disabilities. Participants will complete self-reporting instruments: coping self-efficacy scale, multidimensional scale of perceived social support and demographic questionnaire.

Sexual Orientation and High-Functioning Individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorder

Location: Online Survey

The purpose of this survey is to gain an expanded understanding of the unique clinical concerns about sexuality presented by the growing number of individuals diagnosed with ASD. We are interested in understanding how someone with autism experiences their sexuality, their sexual orientation and their gender-identity.

Evaluating the Efficacy and Safety of Lurasidone

Location: Tampa, Florida

 The purpose of this study is to evaluate the efficacy and safety of Lurasidone in children and adolescents with irritability associated with Autism.

Joint Engagement in Infants at Riskf or ASD: Integrating Treatment and Biomarkers

Location: UCLA Semel Institute

The proposed intervention adapts a parent-mediated intervention that successfully improved outcomes in toddlers with autism. The intervention model (a) targets the foundations of social-communication (joint attention, imitation, play), (b) uses naturalistic strategies to increase the rate and complexity of social-communication and (c) includes parents as implementers of the intervention to promote generalization across settings and activities and to ensure maintenance over time.

Understanding face processing in typical and non-typical children and adults

Location: University of Minnesota, Twin Cities

This study is designed to investigate how typically developing and non-typically developing children/adults process faces. Furthermore we would like to evaluate if/how these individuals’ methods of face processing differ among themselves and in comparison to one another. Certain groups of people, such as those who have received a diagnosis of Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) or Prosopagnosia, have been found to suffer from face processing deficits. The ability to create intervention programs specific to various age groups with certain exceptionalities will be aided by this research.

Next Generation Gene Discovery in Familial Autism

Location: Seattle and other sites in the U.S. (we will visit families out of state)

Researchers at the University of Washington are aiming to learn more about the genetic basis of autism. Armed with a better understanding of what genes are involved in autism, we can develop more effective early detection methods and targeted interventions for individuals with autism.

To answer these complicated questions, we are seeking families with at least one child diagnosed with an autism spectrum disorder and one or more extended family members diagnosed with an autism spectrum disorder. Through this project, funded by the National Institute of Mental Health, we hope to identify the genes that play a role in autism.

Placebo-controlled Trial of Dextromethorphan in Rett Syndrome

Location: Baltimore, MD

It has been shown that a brain chemical glutamate and its receptor (NMDA) are markedly increased in the brain of young Rett patients. This increase has a neurotoxic effect that may be responsible for causing seizures, behavior problems and learning disability in these children. DM is a commonly used cough syrup available over the counter and this blinded study proposes to determine if DM can block the NMDA receptors in the brain to ameliorate the symptoms of Rett syndrome compared to the placebo.

Joint Attention Mediated Learning Study

Location: Central Indiana, Kansas City, KS and Central North Carolina

The purpose of this study is to test the effects of an intervention that targets promotion improved social-communication of toddler who are at-risk for autism.

Biomarkers in Autism of Aripiprazole and Risperidone Treatment (BAART)

Location: South Carolina

The BAART clinical trial is a comparative study of the relative effectiveness and side-effects between two FDA-approved medications for the treatment of irritability in children with autism: Abilify (Aripiprazole) and Risperidol (Risperidone). All children will receive active medication. After an initial screening process, children will receive weekly comprehensive physical and psychological examinations by a physician for a month, during which the medication dosage is carefully monitored and adjusted. Visits continue biweekly for another 6 weeks. An optional extension phase consisting of monthly visits for 3 months is available. Financial compensation is provided. Doctor visits and study medication are free of charge.

Testing the Generalizability of the Multiple Social Tasks with Adolescent Males

Location: California State University at Northridge

The current project is designed to explore possible differences in cognitive/emotional information processing between adolescents with High-Functioning Autism and normally developing adolescents. While the adolescents from the two groups take a dual task in an indivdiual session, their brain activities will be carefully recorded using diverse measures.

The investigation into how maternal attachment style contributes to social-emotional functioning in early school-aged children diagnosed with autism

Location: Questionnaire via mail

The purpose of this study is to investigate the relationship between attachment style and social skills in children diagnosed with autism. Specifically, mothers of children ages 2 to 18 with pre-existing autism spectrum disorder diagnoses will be recruited for this study. The primary investigator, with the help of the faculty supervisor, will contact schools and organizations that reach this population. If the subjects choose to participate in the study, they will be administered three self-report questionnaires at a time arranged by the mother and the primary investigator or they will be sent the questionnaires via mail and will be given pre-stamped envelopes to send them back to the primary investigator. No self-identifying information will be collected for the purpose of this study.

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