Autism Pre-Symptomatic Prevention

//Autism Pre-Symptomatic Prevention

Autism Pre-Symptomatic Prevention

Joseph Piven, M.D.

UNC Department of Psychiatry

Thomas E. Castelloe Distinguished Professor of Psychiatry, Pediatrics, and Psychology
Director, Carolina Institute for Developmental Disabilities

Dr. Piven’s work has identified potential targets for intervention in autism as well as demonstrating that brain scans in infants can accurately predict which infants will go on to receive a diagnosis of autism.  This work has tremendous potential for altering clinical practice by enabling the possibility of presymptomatic prevention in children at risk.

Over the last 12 years, Dr. Piven has led the NIH-funded Infant Brain Imaging Study (IBIS) Network. The work of this network is unique in mapping brain development in the first two years of life, in a high familial risk sample, as autistic symptoms first unfold in affected children. The work has demonstrated the existence of presymptomatic brain changes as well as a cascade or sequence of brain and behavior changes over the first two years of life in autism. This work has identified potential targets for intervention as well as producing several high profile papers demonstrating that brain scans in infants can accurately predict which infants will go on to receive a diagnosis of autism. This work has tremendous potential for altering clinical practice by enabling the possibility of presymptomatic prevention. In 2017 three papers from the IBIS Network were ranked in the top ten list of influential publications by the advocacy and funding organization Autism Speaks. Critical aspects of this work have been supported by the Foundation of Hope.

2019-05-15T15:37:58-04:00