Home > Science > Autism Speaks launches major effort to develop new effective medical treatments for people with ASD

Autism Speaks launches major effort to develop new effective medical treatments for people with ASD

This guest post is by Nancy Jones, Ph.D, the Program Director for the Autism Treatment Network and Autism Clinical Trials Network at Autism Speaks.

Developing novel and more effective treatments that improve quality of life for individuals with autism is a great need but also a substantial challenge. The challenge is not only to discover treatments but also to support their efficacy with evidence from rigorous treatment trials.

There is a large body of research showing that a wide range of behavioral interventions are safe and effective for improving cognitive and language abilities and adaptive behavior in children with ASD.  Many people with ASD can receive additional benefit from the use of medicines, but the medications that are currently available,  tend only to address symptoms associated with ASD, such as irritability and hyperactivity.  While important, there is a great need to develop medications that can help reduce the core symptoms of ASD, including difficulties in social interaction and communication and repetitive behaviors.  To accelerate progress in this area, this year, Autism Speaks launched a Translational Medicine Research Initiative. Its overarching goal is to increase the number of safe and effective medical treatments available for individuals with ASD.

One may wonder why the development of new treatments is such a challenging task. One challenge is getting all of the different stakeholders needed to accomplish this goal together and working collaboratively by sharing resources and ideas.  This means bringing together the academic scientists who are making basic discoveries about autism, the clinicians treating children and conducting the clinical trials, private and public funders who provide research grants,  the companies that develop pharmaceutical and nutritional treatments and the families and individuals with ASD.  To achieve this, one of the first endeavors of Autism Speaks’ Translational Research Initiative was to host two meetings bringing together these key stakeholders. These meetings launched the initiative and set the stage for further directions and activities.

One barrier to the development of effective treatments has been the tremendous individual differences found across individuals with ASD in terms of their symptoms and needs.  This raises  two important questions: 1) How do we best identify the individuals who will be most responsive to specific treatment, and 2) What is the best way to measure that a treatment has actually had an effect? These questions are concerned with “outcome measures” – the  assessments that are used to determine whether a treatment has been effective.  Outcome measures were the focus of the first meeting, Outcome Measures for Clinical Trials with Individuals with ASD: Challenges and Opportunities, co-sponsored by Autism Speaks and Pfizer, Inc., held in Washington DC on Jan. 11-12, 2011. The meeting hosted clinicians, academic experts in the field of outcome measurement, representatives from eight pharmaceutical companies, funding agencies, and community stakeholders. The meeting’s goals were:  1) to discuss strategies for promoting more effective clinical trials of medications to address autism core and associated symptoms and  2)to develop consensus regarding  the best clinical assessments to determine whether a treatment has been effective in clinical trials.

The group discussed the following key points to be addressed in future initiatives:

  • Since there are currently a number of very good outcome measures that are appropriate for clinical trials,developing consensus on a group of standard measures is a key next step. FDA approval of a medication requires consensus outcome measures.  Among the questions that were discussed in regards to standard measures were: 1)  what are the most sensitive outcome measures, 2) what is the best setting to measure outcome, and 3)  from whom should the outcome data be collected (parents, teachers, clinicians)?
  • There are opportunities to develop new outcome measures based on promising technologies that provide measures of biological change.  Experts in new technologies that can make use of devices such as the iPhone to collect outcome data in real time and in real world settings also offered several promising ideas.
  • Long-term success of those conducting clinical trials with people with ASD requires closer collaboration between parents, clinicians, and the basic scientists who are developing treatment targets.

The second meeting was focused on the basic science that is aimed at developing new treatment targets. Translational Medicine Research in ASD: Challenges and Opportunities, was held January 25-27, 2011 in Santa Monica, CA. The goal of this meeting was to identify ways to accelerate the basic science needed to discover and develop new medicines.    The meeting included a cross-section of leaders from research funding agencies and the pharmaceutical industry, as well as experts in the fields of molecular biology, neuroscience, animal models, metabolism, and clinical research.  Topics ranged from single gene disorders to medical conditions such as GI problems, epilepsy, and mitochondrial disorder, to assays for screening medications, such as induced pluripotent stem cells.

The discussion and presentations addressed three key issues: 1) What have we learned from drug discovery in other disorders that can help us develop novel autism treatments? 2) What does autism biology tell us about promising systems and pathways that might be amenable to treatment? 3) What is needed to take promising ideas from the lab and speed their development into effective treatments?

A number of key points were highlighted, including:

  • Private and public partnerships involving non-profit organizations, NIH, and industry will be critical for providing the supportive environment to move discovery forward.  Partnerships with industry, in particular, are crucial since these companies are responsible for bringing medications to market.  These partnerships are necessary not just for funding opportunities, but also for the creation of research collaborations and shared resources, such as biorepositories and databases.
  • New findings in the areas of genetics and neuroscience are helping us better understand the biology of ASD and are pointing toward the development of new treatments. Some new treatments are already in the pipeline and others are being studied.  Continued investments in understanding the underlying physiology and biology of ASD are crucial for making continued progress in this area.
  • The discovery of new therapeutics for ASD can take advantage of what has been learned from related single gene disorders such as Rett Syndrome, Fragile X and Tuberous Sclerosis.   Because we know so much more about the biology of these conditions, drugs targets and in some cases, human clinical trials are already developed for these conditions.  Will some of these medications also be useful for the larger population of individuals with ASD?
  • New technologies exist for understanding the biology of ASD and testing novel therapeutics that were not previously available.  The hope is that these technologies will accelerate discovery.
  • Individuals with ASD and their families can provide vital information about their experience with treatments and their treatment needs to prioritize future research investments.  Progress will depend on families and scientists working closely together.

Many families and individuals with ASD have been awaiting the development of novel treatment options. A clear message from both these meetings is that we are at a place where we have knowledge, promising technologies, and most importantly, the interest and commitment amongst key stakeholders to be successful in this pursuit.

  1. Linda Rice
    February 16, 2011 at 9:19 am | #1

    I’m not completely against researching medication options, but I hate to see a bulk of the money going to this. Basically, we donate money to autism speaks, they give money to develop medications, and some day, a drug company is going to make billions off this medication. Meanwhile, I have a 4 year old with high functioning autism, and am paying for 2.5 hours ABA out of pocket, because I can’t afford the 10 his doctor recommends. The research on behavioral treatments is by no means complete. There are no studies comparing ABA to floortime, or other methods. There is no definitive answer on how much treatment is needed. Maybe if there was, it would be easier to get the school or insurance companies to cover it. And I am concerned about, like with most other medical problems, we will be first turning to drugs. Prozac was an incredible discovery for people with chronic chemical depression, but now its the first line of treatment instead of talk therapy and trying to get to the core issues.

    • February 16, 2011 at 1:02 pm | #2

      Hi Linda,

      My beautiful 8 year old son is challenged with Autism as well. His oficial diagnosis was ~ 5 years ago although we have been working with specialists and educators since he was 16 months old. Colt has no known allegies nor does he take any medications. My husband and I are in agreement with you regarding the concerns of medications. With all this said, a study was published just before Christmas connecting Autism with mitochondrial dysfunction. The company that I am a distributor for launched a nutritional supplement to the market last Sept that is specific to supporting and rejuventating our mitochondria. When I read the study … I immediately put the information in front of our lead scientist, Dr. Joe Chang … to see 1. if the supplement would be safe for my son and 2. beneficial.
      Colt has been on ageLOC Vitality for 76 days today. His whole world has opened up. By day # 2 his eye to eye contact was back. He is participating, engaging in real conversation, playing with friends, flapping of his arms has lessened, tippy toe walking has lessened, learning how to ride his bike. We have received an amazing gift and are very hopeful. Is this nutritional supplement the answer? Probably not, BUT it is a missing piece of the puzzle for our son. I have been keeping a journal of Colt’s journey since he started on the supplement. I would love to share his story. If you are interested, please send me your e-mail as it is quite lengthy.

      God Bless,

      Stephanie

      • Sandy Scott Greene
        February 16, 2011 at 5:52 pm | #3

        Stephanie, I herd something about the mitochandria factor. I would love to hear what and how you got this supplament. What a blessing it sounds like for Colt! My e mail is sastwin@hotmail.com Thanks and God Bless Sandy

      • Harry An
        February 16, 2011 at 11:16 pm | #4

        Hi Stephanie,

        I am in Toronto, Canada. I am glad to read about that the supplement helps your son. I have two sons, the older one has severe autism, at the age of 19, he has virtually no language, just a few single words. He had a lot of behavior problems, like aggression, depression, etc. He has been on supplement like Enzyme complete from Kirkman Lab, Vitamin B complex, HMF forte, etc. I am surprised by the result that your son received from LOC Vitality. I like to know more about the supplement and your story. Thanks very much!

    • February 16, 2011 at 7:47 pm | #5

      I quite agree with your comments regarding the allocations for research. For those suffering the problems, I believe their hope is to see meaningful progress now rather than long term delays for finding the help they need. It is rare indeed to see research into the cause for these disorders being funded. It would advance the search for the cause and ultimately the cure if private donations and tax payer funds had a stipulation that would support finding the cause rather than a new medication or other speculative long term research in genetics, etc. I would suggest a much greater focus on the nutrient needs of the brain and nervous system and identifying if the foods recommended can meet those needs would be a fertile area to research.

  2. Sarah
    February 16, 2011 at 10:12 am | #6

    I love the ATN
    I love the ATN
    Hi ho the dario
    I love the ATN

    :)

  3. Katie Wright
    February 16, 2011 at 12:46 pm | #7

    I agree that drug development should not play major role in ATN. Drug development takes many, many, many YEARS and is prohibitively expensive. It is good if pharma takes input form ATN but families cannot finance drug development.

    I did not see feel a sense of urgency in this. Many of our kids are living w/ chronic pain now. Was that discussed?

    I want to see a lot more specifics here. Less basic science and more of a clinical emphasis. I am concerned there were more academics and pharma reps in attendance than parents, GIs who specialize in ASD kids, nutritionists, mito disorder experts (like Zimmerman and Polings), allergists, pediatric immunologists and toxicologists (like Deth or James). If you are going to study pathways you cannot examine genes in isolation. My son has 5x the normal amount of rubella. It affects his immune system functioning. My son has an absurdly low T cell count, which we treat w/ IVIG. We need occasional use of anti-inflammatories to keep the bowel disease in check…

    There is no need to re invent the wheel here. There are many medical interventions that need to be researched NOW. Basic science and genetic translation operations can wait.

    • Dadvocate
      February 16, 2011 at 3:52 pm | #8

      While I think hosting collaborative sessions like these are important (another one, IMFAR, has grown by leaps and bounds over the last few years), I’d sure like to know who these “stakeholders” are. I don’t oppose pharmacological interventions. For some in our community they can be a huge life changing positive but I think it’s important to have transparency in the process and…I agree with Katie here…much more participation from clinicians on the front lines who can instruct the academics about things like subtypes and co-morbid conditions that are often present (ear infections, seizure disorders, g.i. disorders, hyper or under stimulation issues, etc.)

      ATN members seem to have a focus on diagnosis. That’s critical but so is the issue of what happens after that. Clinical “best practices” are key. For example, a number of physicians use existing medications off label to treat patients with autism spectrum disorders. What are their experiences?

    • Dadvocate
      February 16, 2011 at 3:57 pm | #9

      As another example, since 1967, ARI has collected survey data from 27,000 parents on the behavioral effects of a variety of biomedical interventions. I think things like this are very important to codify and perhaps see done from the clinicians point of view.

      http://www.autism.com/pdf/providers/ParentRatings2009.pdf

    • Bronwyn Sach
      February 19, 2011 at 3:01 pm | #10

      Have you looked at the work done with Gut and Psychology Syndrome – Dr Natasha Campbell-McBride? this seems to bring many of these factors together and although there is no solid clinical studies done as yet that I am aware of (its hard to study something which is not samll, white, round and has no funding), the clinical results are impressive. I would be interested to hear if anyone has looked at GAPS and what they thought or what they experienced.

  4. Sandy Scott Greene
    February 16, 2011 at 1:57 pm | #11

    I am aware of the complication of ASD I have a 14 and 12 year old with this and have tried many therapies , trainings and medicines that have temporaily helped. However, the core issues still remain, it is a constant struggle with stomach issues, agression, depression,OCD and lack the of their ability to stay organized (on task) . The behvioral issues in a social setting is still one we address constantly. This being said I feel that it is hard to find the right answer for such a large issue. However any progress in finding something that will help those with ASD is a benefit. I know the funding could go here or there but one answer can lead to a group of benifits for many. Thanks for all the help and insight we can get to support those we love! Sandy

  5. Sarah
    February 16, 2011 at 7:58 pm | #12

    As a parent I support this and ATN. I think my son’s autism is primarily due to immune dysregulation which shows as behavioral symptoms. I would like to see research into safe and effective treatment of GI and brain inflammation, immunity in the brain specifically defective microglia and their relationship to behaviors/mental illness and ways to address immune dysfunction.

    Nobel Prize winning geneticist, Dr. Mario Capecchi, is a great resource and someone I think could help doctors at ATN.

    Here’s an interview with Dr. Capecchi in which he talks about the relationship bewteen mental illness, microglia and immunity in the brain. Capecchi says mental illness should be treated as an immune problem. Mental illness is a symptom of a dysfunctional immune system. It’s fascinating.

    Dr. Capecchi interview:

    http://www.ksl.com/?nid=148&sid=10947928

    We need to build on the research that has been done like Dr. Capecchi’s. I think scientists are now equipped with a lot of good, solid scientific research that tells them what the core medical problems in autism are (inflammation due to immune dysfunction, innate immune system dysregulation). So I think it’s time to start building on this and look medicine that are immune stabilizers as a possible autism treatment.

    I think the treatment should incllude natural alternatives. I support natural treatments like Omega 3, CO-Q10, B Vitamins, probiotics, GSE and Curcumin.

    I think SSRI are not effective and very risky to kids. I would like to see less reliance on SSRIs as a treatment.

  6. Geri Dawson, Chief Science Officer, Autism Speaks
    February 17, 2011 at 11:51 am | #13

    I would like to respond to several important points that have been made. Although Autism Speaks is now investing some funds into translational medicine research, we continue to fund research on a wide range of treatments – both behavioral and biomedical – across the lifespan (from infants to adults). I agree with you, Linda, that there are still important questions that need to be addressed in the area of behavioral interventions, which is one of the most successful approaches to treatment for individuals with ASD.
    One reason we have decided to invest some of our funding in translational medicine is recent scientific evidence suggests that it might be possible to reduce or restore abilities in areas that are challenges for people with ASD, such as social interaction, communication, repetitive behaviors, seizures, and even learning ability. For children who, despite behavioral interventions, continue to struggle, such medicine might be very helpful.
    The types of medicine that this initiative is exploring include nutraceuticals. We currently are funding randomized clinical trials on various nutraceuticals (e.g., omega-3 fatty acid, B vitamins). At the conference we held in Santa Monica, experts in the areas of mitochondrial dysfunction, immune abnormalities, and GI problems participated, and new approaches to detecting and treating these conditions were discussed.
    I agree that it is crucial that there is close communication between clinicians who are taking care of people with ASD and the basic bench scientists. I also agree that we need to collect as much data as possible about what treatments are being used and which ones are found effective for which children. To do this, the Autism Treatment Network created a patient registry. Clinicians enter information about the diagnosis and types of challenges each children has, all treatments the child is using, and whether those treatments have been effective. There are now over 3,000 children in the registry. Large data bases like this will help us understand individual differences in responses to different treatment approaches.

    • February 17, 2011 at 2:55 pm | #14

      Geri,

      I want to thank you and also share an amazing story because of an article published by Autism Speaks …

      Just before the holidays, Autism Speaks published an article connecting Autism with a mitochondrial dysfunction. Just prior to this study coming out, the company that I am a distributor for launched a nutritional supplement specific to supporting and rejuvenating our mitochondria.

      Yes, I have a beautiful son, Colt, and he is challenged with Autism. We have been working with specialists and educators since he was 16 months of age.

      When your study was published, I immediately put the science in front of our leading scientist, Dr. Joe Chang, to see if ageLOC Vitality would be safe and beneficial for my son. Today, Colt has been on the supplement for 75 days. And I am proud to say “We have Colt back!” He is present. His eye to eye contact is back, he is engaging in conversation, he is playing with children on the playground, he is participating in his own life.

      I have been keeping a daily journal since Colt started on Vitality and I would love to share it with you. If you are interested, please send me your e-mail as it is quite lengthy.

      Again, thank you for your continued efforts and research. You have brought a blessing to this family.

      Stephanie

  7. Glenda
    February 17, 2011 at 11:55 am | #15

    Is there a natural way to treat Autism. My son is 7 we have know for 2years now and he still has the headaches and upset stommy. I hate seeing him like this help. Has for the sleep. The melatonin is working great. I realy need more info.

    • Sarah
      February 17, 2011 at 1:41 pm | #16

      Hi Glenda,

      I’ve used naturopathic medicine for my son. I strongly suggest you consult with a naturopathic doctor or alternative practitioner b/c they can help guide you. The most effective natural treatments for my son were:

      Enhansa (curcumin) by Lee Silsby – anti-inflammatory, anti fungal, antibacterial..helped reduce brain fog, increase metnal alterness

      Trienza (enzyme/ digestive supplement)

      Kids Culturelle- probiotic for intestinal health/ balance

      Omega 3 fish oil

      B vitamins- celluar/ mitochondrial support

      CO Q 10- cellular/mitochodrial support

      Calcium, magensium and Min Chex for calming

      Epsom salt baths- calming

      Virastop- anti-viral

      L-Lysine- for HHV 6 (herpes) infections

      Grapefruit Seed extract- natural anti-biotic

      Pedialyte- elctrolyte balance

      Some more resources:

      http://www.healing-arts.org/children/autism-treatments.htm

      http://www.amfoundation.org/naturopathinfo.htm

      http://books.google.com/books?id=z3wGZed5VlsC&pg=PA547&lpg=PA547&dq=natural+medicine,+autism&source=vrt&ots=SLhOkBAU3C&sig=MRZWrRYzruRb3KDzHj45VRGNY-Y&hl=en&ei=2mVdTZuPFIXLgQf4gq2eDQ&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=11&ved=0CGAQ6AEwCg#v=onepage&q=natural%20medicine%2C%20autism&f=false

      hope this helps,

      Sarah

    • Sarah
      February 17, 2011 at 2:23 pm | #17

      oh one more supplement:

      drenatrophin PMG- By Whole Foods for adrendal gland support

      Good Quality Supplement suppliers:

      Lee Silsby

      Standard Process- A division of Whole Foods

      Houston’s

    • February 17, 2011 at 2:42 pm | #18

      Hi Glenda and Sarah,

      My beautiful son is challenged with Autism. Just before the holidays an article was published connecting Autism with a mitochondrial dysfunction. I bring this up because there is an amazing nutritional supplement (all natural) that was launched to the market last September which is specific to supporting and rejuvenating our mitochondria. We have had our son on this supplement for 75 days … helpful is an understatement. We have our son back! Colt is now present. His eye to eye contact has returned, he is engaged in conversation, he is playing with other children on the playground, he had his first playdate at the house. Please note, Colt is 8 years old. We have been working with specialists and educators since he was 16 months old. He has never wanted to engage and would know his routine, but had a very difficult time if his routine were to change … this is no longer the case. We still have lots of work to do catching him up with his gross motor skills, but Colt is now in the same room with us participating in his life rather than being prompted and lead.
      A Blessing.
      If you would like to read Colt’s journey and find out more about ageLOC Vitality, please send me your e-mail.
      God Bless,
      Stephanie

  8. February 17, 2011 at 12:22 pm | #19

    Harry An :Hi Stephanie,
    I am in Toronto, Canada. I am glad to read about that the supplement helps your son. I have two sons, the older one has severe autism, at the age of 19, he has virtually no language, just a few single words. He had a lot of behavior problems, like aggression, depression, etc. He has been on supplement like Enzyme complete from Kirkman Lab, Vitamin B complex, HMF forte, etc. I am surprised by the result that your son received from LOC Vitality. I like to know more about the supplement and your story. Thanks very much!

    Harry An,
    I would be more than happy to share Colt’s Journey and more specifics about the ageLOC Vitality/ mitochondria. Please send me your e-mail as his journal is quite lengthy, but so worth the read … I have my son back! We still have work to do with his Gross motor Skills, but instead of “knocking on the door” constantly … Colt is with us and participating and wanting to get better. It truly is a miracle!

    • Harry An
      February 17, 2011 at 1:03 pm | #20

      Hi Stephanie,

      My email address is redstarradiofun@gmail.com I am looking forward to read the journal, thanks very much!

    • February 17, 2011 at 2:49 pm | #22

      Hi Harry An
      In my research with non-verbal children, the parents have reported their child that could not utter Mamma, after two to four months had developed a vocabulary of 40-60 words, seemed to understand everything, could form short sentences and had no more tantrums or melt downs. For free info on this research visit http://www.whostolemyfood.com
      One parent in Italy has postponed his plan for stem cell research treatments because of his child’s progress with natural treatments used in the study.

  9. February 17, 2011 at 12:24 pm | #23

    Sandy Scott Greene :Stephanie, I herd something about the mitochandria factor. I would love to hear what and how you got this supplament. What a blessing it sounds like for Colt! My e mail is sastwin@hotmail.com Thanks and God Bless Sandy

    Sandy,
    I will be up-dating Colt’s journal this morning. You will be receiving it from stephsstuff@hotmail.com
    God Bless,
    Stephanie

  10. February 17, 2011 at 4:57 pm | #24

    This sounds like a good initiative. Identifying those people for who intervention of various types may be useful to improve quality of life (at the same time respecting those who do not want or need such intervention) and attempting to ascertain best- and non-responder characteristics. I do forsee perhaps some difficulty in identifying response based purely on behavioural and psychometric data and this will require some thought and consensus – this is perhaps where the science of metabolomics could offer a new window. I would also echo the comments on the need to look at the various co-morbidities occuring alongside the core diagnosis of autism; I dare say that it some cases it is more likely to be that intervention affects the co-morbidity/ies which then has a “knock-on” effect to core symptoms. As for drug development, I agree that this is a time-consuming process; the caveat being that most new drugs being used in medicine these days tend to be drugs which companies already have stored (and they have literally millions of compounds stored) and used for one condition, which are then tested and found to be useful for others (think viagra, which was initially designed to treat hypertension) (new applications obviously requiring various safety and efficacy study). Finally (sigh of relief!) one should not discount the possibility that more widely available alternatives (such as the nutraceuticals- vitamins, minerals, fatty acids, etc) may also show some effect – only this week the BBC reports on zinc as being an effective treatment for the common cold according to a new Cochrane Review.

  11. February 18, 2011 at 9:01 am | #25

    Hi everyone. What bothers me is why are we trying to find a pill if we haven’t found the cause. First and foremost we should find the CAUSE, not pumping our children with drugs we will not know the long-run side effects. I have a 22 yr. old son. When he was diagnosed there was NOTHING out there for me. Let’s simultaneously run research of what causes Autism and then deal with the medicine it would require to treat. I am appauled that anyone would pump a human with pills without thinking of how long it takes to approve one medicine. In my opinion let’s gather research to find the CAUSE then deal with meds. For many years I followed the research done at Duke and UCLA for a pill form that supposedly would work for the social inadequacies of someone with ASD. Still waiting it’s been twenty some years. The other problem, ASD has people with multiple disabilities all jumbled into every person with ASD. So my concern is, WHY hasn’t the research been done nationwide?? Or internationally??? Too many unanswered questions!! We as a nation should protest and ask for the CAUSE!! Then we will get the effect many parents like myself have been waiting for. The saddest thing is hoping you can outlast the answers without leaving your child alone in an unpredictable world and his advocate be gone.

    • February 18, 2011 at 3:09 pm | #26

      I quite agree with you Millie. My research into the cause has confirmed the cause to be diet related and due to about sixty nutrients that have been found to be low or missing in those with autism. I was able to confirm with fewer numbers that when those missing nutrients were available in the diet, the symptoms in most cases disappear in less than one to a few weeks. This was true for melt downs, temper tantrums, ADD/ADHD, Tourette’s, Asperger’s, and PDD-NOS. Non-verbal children took two to four months to start forming short sentences but is was immediately observable that they appeared to understand everything.
      Information on this study is available at http://www.whostolemyfood.com

  12. Lori
    February 22, 2011 at 4:59 pm | #27

    As the mother of a 19 year old with severe autism and behavior issues, I am holding out hope for medicatins that may alleviate his symptoms. Having been through years/1000′s of hours of behavioral interventions, I know that his lack of progress is due in large part to something internal. For those with children who have less severe autism, I understand your wanting to focus on the behavioral therapies, but for those of us with children who struggle with the very basics of day to day life (sitting still, riding in a car, not screaming or biting one’s self or others), medication seems the best hope. I applaud Autism Speaks in their efforts to fund research which will help all of our children and adults.

  13. Jenny
    March 31, 2011 at 9:47 pm | #28

    I totally agree with Lori. My son, who is 12 years old now, also has severe autism. Medication is our only and best hope for him. I also applaud Autism Speaks’efforts to fund research which will help those who struggle with autism.

    • April 1, 2011 at 11:03 pm | #29

      Lori, I have to disagree with the comment that “Medication is our only hope–.”
      There is mounting evidence that autism results from some critical nutrients that are absent in the diets of children with autism. I believe there are around sixty nutrients that have been found to be missing. Medicine can never replace those nutrients but they can be found in many of the foods that contain cholesterol.

  14. April 1, 2011 at 2:39 pm | #30

    Lori and Jenny,
    Amen. My son, who is now 9, is challenged with Autism and has responded beautifully to a new nutritional supplement that we introduced into his diet ~ 4 months ago. It is by no means the cure, but we have witnessed monumental progress to the tune of having to completely re-write his IEP! As a mom, I will look into any and every possible treatment be it traditional or wholistic … I just want the best for my son.
    God Bless.
    Stephanie

  15. Sam
    June 3, 2011 at 11:06 pm | #31

    Our therapist has suggested taking Curcumin (enhansa). I here that the bodies reaction could be severe. Anyone have experience with Curcumin?

  1. February 15, 2011 at 4:42 pm | #1

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