What we do

Active studies

Physical Exercise to Reduce Anxiety in Underserved Children with ASD

Lead principal investigator
Jean Gehricke, PhD – University of California, Irvine
Study period

Jun 2015 – Aug 2017

This research proposal will examine the feasibility and efficacy of a physical exercise intervention to reduce anxiety in children from underserved families. The physical exercise program is designed to incorporate the new key guidelines for physical exercise in children from the Centers for Disease Control.

Improving Participation in Dental Care and Oral Health Outcomes for Underserved Children with ASD

Lead principal investigator
Robin Steinberg-Epstein, MD - University of California, Irvine
Study period

Sep 2015 – Aug 2019

This study is a randomized controlled trial (RCT) to compare the efficacy of the established AIR-P Dental Toolkit to a combined regimen involving the Dental Toolkit and a parent-mediated behavioral intervention. Study objectives include improving home dental hygiene, oral health, and compliance with dental procedures in under-served populations with Autism Spectrum Disorder.

First Impressions: Strategies to Enhance Initial Adult Care Visits for Transitioning Youth with Autism Spectrum Disorders

Lead principal investigator
Marji Erickson Warfield, PhD - Brandeis University
Study period

Dec 2015 – Aug 2017

First Impressions will work with community health center pediatric and adult primary care clinics to test an intervention designed to prepare youth and their families for transition, increase the capacity of physicians and office staff in primary care adult clinics to welcome referred youth with Autism Spectrum Disorder, and establish a single point of contact in the adult primary care office.

Development of a Resiliency Program for Parents of Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder

Lead principal investigator
Elyse Park, PhD – Massachusetts General Hospital for Children
Study period

Jun 2016 – Aug 2017

This intervention builds upon a modified version of Dr. Park’s evidence-based 8-week multimodal treatment designed to promote adaptation to stress and promotion of resiliency. This study will refine the 8-session group virtual-delivered resiliency treatment program consisting of 8 virtual group 1 hour sessions. The goal of this study would be to advance our ultimate objective to implement a national parental resiliency program. A total of approximately 70 participants from diverse racial and ethnic backgrounds will be recruited for this study.

Study of Oxytocin in ASD to Improve Reciprocal Social Behaviors

Lead principal investigator
Ann Neumeyer, MD - Massachusetts General Hospital for Children
Study period

Jun 2016 – Aug 2017

The SOARS-B trial (Study of Oxytocin in ASD to improve Reciprocal Social Behaviors) is a pivotal randomized, placebo-controlled investigation of intranasal oxytocin in the treatment of social dysfunction in children and adolescents with ASD that is funded by the NIH.

Two-Phase Study of Probiotics for Quality of Life through GI and Emotional Stability in Youth with ASD and Anxiety

Lead principal investigator
L. Eugene Arnold, MD – The Ohio State University
Study period

Jun 2016 – Aug 2017

This research effort proposes to explore the microbiome-mental/physical function connection for ASD, GI dysfunction, and anxiety. If altering the gut microbiome results in better GI and emotional function, it could improve quality of life for children with ASD and their parents.

A Novel Walking Route Pilot Program Aimed at Promoting Physical Activity in Children with Autism

Lead principal investigator
Nicolas Oreskovic, MD - Massachusetts General Hospital for Children
Study period

Jun 2016 – Aug 2017

Investigators propose to create a novel walking route protocol for children with autism and determine the feasibility of using walking routes as a new physical activity opportunity and to determine the preliminary efficacy of walking routes to increase physical activity levels among children with autism. The study will enroll twelve children and adolescents ages 6-18 years with autism who are overweight or obese (BMI β‰₯85th percentile), living in Massachusetts, and followed at MGH Revere HealthCare Center.

ECHO Autism Collaborative

Lead principal investigator
Kristin Sohl, MD
Study period

Sep 2016 – Aug 2018

The ECHO Autism Collaborative study assesses the the impact of a collaborative telehealth intervention using ECHO (Extension for Community Healthcare Outcomes) technology with primary care providers. The intervention is aimed at increasing provider knowledge, improving clinical practice, and enhancing self-efficacy in caring for children with Autism Spectrum Disorder.