Autism Speaks and the Autism Genome Project Consortium Announce New Research Collaboration with the Broad Institute to Study Genetic Susceptibility in Autism Spectrum Disorders
NEW YORK, NY (December 4, 2007) – Autism Speaks and the Autism Genome Project (AGP) Consortium today announced an unprecedented collaborative effort with the Broad Institute to identify the genes underlying susceptibility to autism spectrum disorders (ASDs).
The AGP autism family database includes detailed genetic data and clinical information on more than 3,500 families. This resource will allow the AGP, in collaboration with researchers at the Broad Institute and Johns Hopkins University, to test whether potential gene associations recently identified in the Broad/Johns Hopkins genome-wide study are truly related to autism. Validation of such initial associations is critical to separating true findings from those simply attributable to chance.
The Autism Genome Project (AGP) is a public/private partnership uniting some of the world’s leading researchers in autism genetics in a groundbreaking project to identify autism genes. The AGP was established in 2004 by a group of leading autism geneticists with the goals of improving scientific collaboration and speeding the pace of scientific discovery by assembling the largest genetic repository of families with autism.
This collaboration reflects the mission of AGP to bring together researchers working on autism genetics to tackle complex problems that cannot be taken on by individual research groups.
ABOUT AUTISM SPECTRUM DISORDERS
Autism spectrum disorders (ASD) are a group of developmental disabilities defined by significant impairments in social interaction and communication and the presence of unusual behaviors and interests. ASDs, which affect one out of every 150 children in the United States, are among the fastest growing neurodevelopmental disabilities today.
Previous research has shown that autism is due in large part to inherited factors, but in most instances a single gene change does not appear to be sufficient. It is likely that the majority of cases of autism are due to the effects of multiple genes. The key to the research is identifying autism-related genes by studying large numbers of families with an affected individual with autism. Until now, individual research groups have been able to study only small numbers of families, making it difficult to identify the specific genes involved.
ABOUT THE AUTISM GENOME PROJECT
The Autism Genome Project (AGP) Consortium is comprised of over 120 researchers and 50 academic institutions from throughout North America and Western Europe. The AGP brings together the Autism Genetics Cooperative (AGC), the Autism Genetics Resource Exchange (AGRE), Collaborative Programs of Excellence in Autism (CPEA), and the International Molecular Genetic Study of Autism Consortium (IMGSAC). Funding for the AGP comes from an unique combination of international, public and private partners including: Autism Speaks, the UK Medical Research Council (MRC), the Health Research Board of Ireland (HRB), Genome Canada and partners, Canadian Institutes for Health Research (CIHR), Southwest Autism Research and Resource Center (SARRC), and the Hilibrand Foundation.
ABOUT AUTISM SPEAKS
Autism Speaks is dedicated to increasing awareness of autism spectrum disorders, to funding research into the causes, prevention, treatments and cure for autism, and to advocating for the needs of affected families. It was founded in February 2005 by Suzanne and Bob Wright, the grandparents of a child with autism. Bob Wright is Vice Chairman, General Electric, and served as chief executive officer of NBC for more than twenty years. Autism Speaks has merged with both the National Alliance for Autism Research (NAAR) and Cure Autism Now (CAN), bringing together the nation’s three leading autism advocacy organizations. To learn more about Autism Speaks, please visit www.autismspeaks.org.
Autistic people have fought the inclusion of ABA in therapy for us since before Autism Speaks, and other non-Autistic-led autism organizations, started lobbying legislation to get it covered by insurances and Medicaid.
ABA is a myth originally sold to parents that it would keep their Autistic child out of an institution. Today, parents are told that with early intervention therapy their child will either be less Autistic or no longer Autistic by elementary school, and can be mainstreamed in typical education classes. ABA is very expensive to pay out of pocket. Essentially, Autism Speaks has justified the big price tag up front will offset the overall burden on resources for an Autistic’s lifetime. The recommendation for this therapy is 40 hours a week for children and toddlers.
The original study that showed the success rate of ABA to be at 50% has never been replicated. In fact, the study of ABA by United States Department of Defense was denounced as a failure. Not just once, but multiple times. Simply stated: ABA doesn’t work. In study after repeated study: ABA (conversion therapy) doesn’t work.
What more recent studies do show: Autistics who experienced ABA therapy are at high risk to develop PTSD and other lifelong trauma-related conditions. Historically, the autism organizations promoting ABA as a cure or solution have silenced Autistic advocates’ opposition. ABA is also known as gay conversion therapy.
The ‘cure’ for Autistics not born yet is the prevention of birth.
The ‘cure’ is a choice to terminate a pregnancy based on ‘autism risk.’ The cure is abortion. This is the same ‘cure’ society has for Down Syndrome.
This is eugenics 2021. Instead of killing Autistics and disabled children in gas chambers or ‘mercy killings’ like in Aktion T4, it’ll happen at the doctor’s office, quietly, one Autistic baby at a time. Different approaches yes, but still eugenics and the extinction of an entire minority group of people.
Fact: You can’t cure Autistics from being Autistic.
Fact: You can’t recover an Autistic from being Autistic.
Fact: You can groom an Autistic to mask and hide their traits. Somewhat. … however, this comes at the expense of the Autistic child, promotes Autistic Burnout (this should not be confused with typical burnout, Autistic Burnout can kill Autistics), and places the Autistic child at high risk for PTSD and other lifelong trauma-related conditions.