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January 2012 


In This Issue
Free Books for Spring Conference Attendees
ARI to Expand Its Focus in 2012
Get in the 'Know' with our daily trivia
Welcome: Board Member Kim Taylor
GI and CFD Study Authors Slated for Spring ARI Conference
Free Webinar: Science doesn't have to be scary
Million Dollar Puzzle Piece Update

ARI Shield Logo


Spring 2012 NY/NJ Conference

April 27-30
Newark Airport Marriott

Practitioner Seminars, General, Nutrition & Science Sessions


Win an iPad at our Networking Party Saturday April 29th 





Fall 2012 Conference
Hyatt Regency
Orange County, CA 
October 11-14  

Level 1 & 2 Practitioner Seminars, General, Nutrition & Science Sessions

herbert book
Join us in Newark for a free copy of Martha Herbert's new book

Thanks to a generous donation, every attendee at the Spring 2012 ARI Conference will receive a free copy of speaker Martha Herbert's new book The Autism Revolution (due out for release in late March 2012) at conference check-in. Learn more about the book   


Preview Dr. Herbert's seminar online (free CME available) 

researchAutism Research Institute to expand focus in 2012

Since the mid-1990s, ARI has focused much of its efforts on integrative medicine and nutrition.  We continue to fund research, sponsor biannual conferences including two-day science tracks on medical research, organize think tanks with researchers and experienced clinicians, sponsor two levels of clinician seminars, and publish a quarterly science printed newsletter.


For the past couple of years, our staff has been building a foundation to expand ARI's efforts to include other important areas within the field such as adult issues, international networking, sensory intervention, diagnosis/sub-typing, and education.  During the coming months, we will announce new initiatives and projects. We look forward to sharing these updates in the months to come.  

Daily autism tidbits - 'Did you Know?'

The Autism Research Institute is publishing tidbits on autism trivia, research, advice, and history on its homepage,, as well as our Twitter account and Facebook page.  A new tidbit will be uploaded daily, Monday through Friday.  


Dr. Edelson was quoted as saying, "After studying autism for over 30 years, I have seen a lot and I have learned a lot.  I am excited about sharing interesting bits of information with the autism community." Other experts in the field of autism will also contribute to the 'Did you know?' series.  


To read these daily posts, you can subscribe to ARI's Twitter account or Facebook page or on ARI's homepage

Visit our website:
Join Our Mailing List
From the Director:

edelsonI would like to wish everyone a happy 2012.  As we all know, there is much to do to improve the quality of life for those on the autism spectrum and their families, so let's make this year a big one. I would also like to thank our supporters for their generous donations.  


We are quite excited about our website,, which will likely go 'live' in the next couple of months.  The website will be easier to navigate and will continue to provide up-to-date information about a wide variety of topics associated with autism.   


Again - Happy New Year,   

Steve Edelson, PhD, Executive Director
Autism Research Institute
Autism Research Institute welcomes its  newest board member, Kimberly Taylor

taylorKim Taylor recently joined ARI's Board of Directors.  Kim lives in North Carolina, and she has an adult son on the autism spectrum.  She has been active in the Autism Society of North Carolina for many years, and she served on the Autism Society of America's Board of Directors.  Kim has also worked with Dennis Debbaudt on law enforcement issues related to autism.  She is a former District and Superior Court Judge, and she practices law in Statesville and Taylorsville, North Carolina.
Two new studies out this week point to underlying medical issues in ASD
Hear lead authors from both reports at ARI's spring conference April 26-29th in Newark, NJ

Hear lead author Brent Williams at the Science Session at ARI's Spring Conference
Bacteria in the gut of autistic children different from non-autistic children

The underlying reason autism is often associated with gastrointestinal problems is an unknown, but new results were published in the online journal mBio on January 10 reveal that the guts of autistic children differ from other children in at least one important way: many children with autism harbor a type of bacteria in their guts that non-autistic children do not.  


The study was conducted by Brent Williams and colleagues at the Mailman School of Public Health at Columbia University. Read More  



Hear authors Richard Frye, Jill James and Dan Rossignol at ARI's Spring Conference  Learn More 
Cerebral Folate Receptor Autoantibodies in ASD
Cerebral folate deficiency (CFD) syndrome is a neurodevelopmental disorder typically caused by folate receptor autoantibodies (FRAs) that interfere with folate transport across the blood-brain barrier. In this study, released in Molecular Psychology on January 10th, serum FRA concentrations were measured in 93 children with ASD and a high prevalence (75.3%) of FRAs was found. Children with FRAs were treated with oral leucovorin calcium. Compared with controls, significantly higher improvement ratings were observed in treated children over a mean period of 4 months in verbal communication, receptive and expressive language, attention and stereotypical behavior. Approximately one-third of treated children demonstrated moderate to much improvement. The incidence of adverse effects was low. This study suggests that FRAs may be important in ASD and that FRA-positive children with ASD may benefit from leucovorin calcium treatment. Given these results, empirical treatment with leucovorin calcium may be a reasonable and non-invasive approach in FRA-positive children with ASD. Additional studies of folate receptor autoimmunity and leucovorin calcium treatment in children with ASD are warranted. Read More

See the full conference schedule set for the Newark Liberty Airport Marriott April 26-29:

Level 1 & 2 Practitioner Seminars | Adult Services Session 

Nutrition Session | General Session | Science Session | Workshops  

Free Webinar: Understanding research and  developing evidence-based treatment plans

webinarWhen: 1 p.m. EST, Feb. 7th 

The Science Doesn't Have to Be Scary: Understanding Research in the News and Making Evidenced-Based Decisions

This free webinar is for parents and non-medical professionals to introduce the components of published research and give a foundation of knowledge that will allow participants  to read published research, understand research coverage in the media, and formulate meaningful questions for their clinicians. We will also discuss research articles in the news and ways to be a critical consumer.  (This webinar is being presented and produced in collaboration with the Johnson Center for Child Health and Development.) 


Kick off 2012 with a Fundraising Campaign: Sell Puzzle Pieces to Support Research that Makes a Difference


Schoolmates of coordinator Lynda Huggins generously supported the Puzzle Piece Campaign last October at their 50-year high school class reunion -Click the image to view it at a larger size.

New Year's Greetings from project coordinator Lynda Huggins: 


Jim and I recently celebrated our 50th High School Reunion (we were HS sweethearts). A classmate created a wonderful Memory Book for each of us which included our picture from our senior yearbook, a current photo, contact information and whatever we wanted to write.  I included information about the Puzzle Pieces for Autism Research. On his page Jim said that solving the autism puzzle was at the top of his "bucket list".  During the reunion several classmates told us that they have a personal autism connection or know of a child with autism. 


We were greatly surprised and deeply touched when our classmates announced that the balance of money collected (after all bills were paid) would be donated to the Autism Research Institute!  I am very proud to forward their amazing donation of $1,271.93 to ARI! This brings the Puzzle Pieces Project to a total of $133,977.30!


There are so many ways to distribute the Autism Puzzle Pieces. I wish each of you would consider joining us in the New Year. We will continue our year-round efforts until we reach our goal. Together we can make it happen!


Happy New Year 2012,

Lynda Huggins, Chairman

Million Dollar Puzzle for Autism Research

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