Autism is a developmental disability that impacts an individual’s ability to interact with others and often results in considerable impairment throughout life. Current treatments, while critically important, have only modest success in ameliorating symptoms in most affected individuals. Recent studies suggest that autistic symptoms are not present in early infancy but emerge over the first two to three years of life. New research suggests that brain changes characterized by brain scans during this early period can accurately predict those children who will go on to have a later diagnosis of autism. This new research holds considerable promise for pre-symptomatic detection and treatment during a period when the brain is most malleable and most likely to respond to intervention.
About our Speaker
Joe Piven, MD, is the Thomas E. Castelloe Distinguished Professor of Psychiatry and Pediatrics at the University of North Carolina and Director of the Carolina Institute for Developmental Disabilities. He has conducted research on autism for almost 30 years. He is the Principal Investigator of an NIH-funded, prospective brain imaging study of infants at high risk for autism.