CARD Hosts Community-Wide Family Fun Festival in Centreville, Virginia - May 22!

Centreville, Virginia – May 22, 2010 The Center for Autism and Related Disorders, Inc. (CARD), known worldwide for effectively treating children with autism, will host a carnival style community event at Bull Run Park, located at 7700 Bull Run Drive, in Centreville, Virginia on Saturday May 22, 2010 from 1:00pm to 5:00pm. The event is in celebration of CARD’s 20th year anniversary.

“It’s an exciting time for us and we want to celebrate the great strides our clients have made, and bring awareness to the issue of autism,” says CARD Virginia Managing Supervisor Mary Ann Cassell, MA, BCBA. “This event is for everyone in Centreville and surrounding communities. It will be a fun family event, and we invite the community to come out and join us.”

CARD Virginia, located at 6315 Backlick Road, in Springfield, is one of 20 clinics worldwide that the Center for Autism and Related Disorders established to provide effective Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) therapy and parent training with great success. “We’ve had wonderful success with our clients and have even recovered several. These kids go on to attend regular school, develop friendships, and lead happy lives,” says Cassell. “And, this is what we are celebrating.”

The family festival, open to the entire autism community, is free and will feature games, resource booths, food, raffles, prizes and music. All Proceeds of the raffle will benefit Autism Care and Treatment (ACT TODAY)

About the Center for Autism and Related Disorders, Inc. (CARD): CARD, headquartered in Los Angeles, California, is among the world's largest and most experienced organizations effectively treating children with autism and related disorders. CARD operates 20 clinics worldwide. CARD has treated thousands of children around the world. Its services include (but not limited to): assessments, supervision, parent/teacher training and one-on-one applied behavioral therapy. CARD was established in 1990 by Doreen Granpeesheh, PhD, BCBA.

For more information about CARD, visit For complete details about CARD hosted anniversary events around the world, visit


Interdisciplinary Council on Developmental and Learning Disorders (ICDL) Founder Passes Away

It is with great sorrow that we share with you the news:
Stanley I. Greenspan, M.D.
died on April 27, 2010.

Dr. Greenspan was the Founder and Chairman of the Interdisciplinary Council on Developmental and Learning Disorders (ICDL), founding member and past board president of Zero To Three: National Center for Infants, Toddlers, and Families and former director of the National Institute of Mental Health’s Clinical Infant Developmental Program and Mental Health Study Center.

As the world's foremost authority on clinical work with infants and young children with developmental and emotional problems, his work continues to guide parents, professionals and researchers all over the world.

Memorial contributions may be made to the Stanley Greenspan Memorial Scholarship fund, established by the Greenspan family to support future leaders in the field of infant mental health and developmental disorders, currently enrolled or applying to the ICDL Graduate School. Applications for this scholarship will be made available online soon.

For more information about Dr. Greenspan's work and publications, please visit:

DC and Virginia Residents - CARD Wants to Hear from You

Known for exceptional home-based ABA programs, CARD Virginia is researching the requirements for private special education licensure through the Virginia Department of Education. CARD’s current program is suited to this model and if we were able to procure the license and the building space, we feel confident this school could benefit many in Fairfax County.

If you live in the Fairfax County/Washington DC region and have a child with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) or care for a child with ASD, we would like your feedback.

Please take a few minutes to complete the following survey on this concept. If you have more than one child with ASD, you can complete a survey for each child.

Thank you!

CARD Celebrates 20 Years of Excellence with the Rochester Red Wings


Dr. Granpeesheh Discusses Effective Autism Treatments on CBS' The Doctors

Dr. Doreen Granpeesheh, Founder and Executive Director of the Center for Autism and Related Disorders,shares the latest treatments for autism on CBS' The Doctors.

(APRIL 23, 2010)

How, When Child Develops Autism May Determine Outcomes

By Jenifer Goodwin
HealthDay Reporter

Children with autism whose social and communications skills regress around age 3 tend to have more severe autism than children who show signs of the neurodevelopmental disorder at younger ages, new research finds.

Autism spectrum disorders are marked by delays or disruptions in social, language and communications skills, and restricted or repetitive behaviors or interests. Increasingly, doctors are coming to understand that there are several subtypes of the disorder, explained senior study author Dr. Paul Law, director of the Interactive Autism Network at Kennedy Krieger Institute in Baltimore.

In the study, researchers used data from 2,720 parents of children aged 3 to 17 years who had been diagnosed with an autism spectrum disorder. Children were placed in one of three groups, depending on how and when their autism symptoms started:

* Regressive, in which children seemed to be developing generally normally or close to normally, but then experienced a sharp decline in skills before age 3. About 44 percent of the children were in this group.
* Plateau, or the 17 percent of children who were not delayed or only mildly delayed until about age 2, at which point they gradually or abruptly stop developing.
* No loss/no plateau, sometimes called early onset autism, in which subtle signs of autism show up at relatively younger ages, but children don't regress or plateau. About 39 percent of the children fell into this category.

The researchers found some notable differences between the groups. In children who regressed or plateaued, parents said they first became concerned about their child's development at about 17 months, compared to about 15 months for children who did not plateau or regress.

Children who regressed said their first word at about 14 months, compared to 20 months for children who plateaued and 21 months for those with no loss/no plateau autism.

Another difference: Children who regressed took longer to potty train -- about 52 months, compared to about 48 months for other children with autism.

Over time, children who regressed tended to end up with more severe autism. They were at the greatest risk for not attaining conversational speech, and were more likely than the other groups to need educational support, such as a classroom aide. The more marked the regression, the more severe the autism later on, according to the study.

Autism with regression is much debated among researchers, with some estimates putting the prevalence at one-third to one-half of children with the disorder, with others saying as few as 15 percent of children experience regression.

Study author Luther Kalb, a researcher at the Center for Autism and Related Disorders at the Kennedy Krieger Institute, said some of the discrepancy may be definitions of regression -- some consider autism regression to be only children who had no symptoms of autism prior to the decline in previously acquired skills, while others allow for some delays prior to losing skills.

In the study, about 35 percent of parents had concerns about their child's development before their child began losing skills.

The study was published online April 20 in the Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders.

"There are still discussions within the science community about how exactly to define regression," added Andy Shih, vice president of scientific affairs for Autism Speaks. "This study certainly adds to the body of evidence that suggests there is a differentiation between different types of autism development progression and outcomes for the individual."

Parents whose child has experienced regression should take heart, Law said, and remember that the statistics show trends, not how an individual child will do. "A lot of children with regression did well," Law said. "There is a lot of individual variation. This is by no means a very dire sentence."

Among the first signs of autism typically noticed by parents are lack of eye contact or social smiles, speech delays, restricted interests, hand waving or flapping, or generally not engaging with others in the ways other children do, Kalb said.

CARD Founder to Appear on CBS "THE DOCTORS" This Friday

The Center for Autism and Related Disorders, Inc. (CARD) Founder and Executive Director Doreen Granpeesheh, PhD, BCBA-D will appear on the CBS nationally syndicated talk show, The Doctors, this Friday, April 23rd. Dr. Granpeesheh, a world-renowned autism expert, will join a diverse panel of guests in discussing autism.

What happens when you go to the doctor and learn that everything is not OK? Friday's show will empower you to tackle any medical crisis and stand up for your health. Plus, inform you of the warning signs that may indicate autism.

In addition, Dr. Granpeesheh discusses:
  • ABA being the most effective treatment and the need to intergrate biomedical treatments with ABA
  • Managing the medical concerns first then teaching the child
  • The newer treatments that are being tested such as HBOT, including CARD's recent study on HBOT
  • Insurance companies and how they are now starting to cover autism treatments like ABA

This is a show you won't want to miss!

For local TV listing of The Doctors, visit:

Can't watch or record the show? The April 23rd show, featuring Dr. Doreen Granpeesheh, will be available for viewing online, one week after broadcast, by visiting:

Watch Dr. Granpeesheh on other talk shows - right now -
click here!

Meet Dr. Granpeesheh at the following upcoming events
around the world...

Autism Around the World Symposium -
May 06-08
Dubai, UAE
The Child as a Whole: Biomedical and Behavioral Interventions are Both Critical to Growth and Recovery

International Autism Conference -
July 05-06
Jerusalem, Israel
Curriculum for People with ASDs: An International Model of Service Delivery for People with ASDs

A More Accurate Picture Of The Autistic Brain Provided By Dual Approach

A new study, the first of its kind, combines two complementary analytical brain imaging techniques, to provide a more comprehensive and accurate picture of the neuroanatomy of the autistic brain. The study, published in the April issue of neuroimaging journal Human Brain Mapping, was conducted by researchers at The Montreal Neurological Institute and Hospital - The Neuro, McGill University and the Universite de Montreal. The findings provide critical insight into autism and possible markers for the disease for use in early therapy and therapeutic strategies.

Autism is a complex spectrum disorder thought to affect 1 in 166 people. Autistic individuals have difficulties with social interaction, communication and repetitive behaviours, which can lead to isolation and emotional problems. They may also have enhanced abilities particularly in auditory and visual perception.

Although structural brain differences have been reported in autism, the reports are inconsistent. The Neuro research team's objective therefore was to investigate neuroanatomical differences using a dual-analytic approach, combining cortical thickness analysis (CT) and voxel-based morphometry (VBM) together for the first time in the same participants. The team studied a group of young adults with autism of average intelligence and similar language ability relative to closely matched typically developing controls.

"The findings are significant from a functional perspective because the anatomical differences are found in brain regions known to play a functional role in the core features of autism such as social communication and repetitive behaviours, says Dr. Krista Hyde, research fellow with Dr. Alan Evans at The Neuro, and lead investigator in the study. "This is the first step to looking for clues or markers that would help us correlate structural differences with functional and behavioural characteristics."

The advantage in analyzing brain anatomy using CT and VBM is the complementary nature of the two methods, which in combination provide a direct measure of cortical grey matter, regions of the brain that consist primarily of nerve cell bodies. The combined method also provides a measure of subcortical grey matter as well as white matter, regions of the brain composed mainly of nerve cell fibres which have myelin sheaths, the protective covering that insulates and supports nerve cells. "The converging results found from CT and VBM analysis, allows us to make more confident interpretations about the structural brain differences found in autism," adds Dr. Hyde.

Regional differences in grey matter were found in socially-relevant and communication-related brain areas, as well as in areas implicated in repetitive behaviours and those found to play a role in empathic behavior. The study also identifies grey matter increases in autism in the visual cortex and for the first time, in the primary auditory cortex. "We believe that the visual and auditory cortical thickness increases may be related to enhanced visual and auditory perception in autism."

"These new results are extremely important because they offer a more accurate picture of the autistic brain, helping researchers improve early autism treatment strategies," says Dr. Anthony Phillips, Scientific Director of the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) Institute of Neurosciences, Mental Health and Addiction. "Autism rates have been rising steadily in Canada, so CIHR is proud to support researchers who devote their time to look into this neurological condition."

The study's findings provide vital insight into autism by identifying structural differences in functionally relevant areas of the brain in a group of individuals with autism using a dual analytic approach for the first time.

The study was funded by The Canadian Institutes of Health Research.

Anita Kar
McGill University

Actor Joe Mantegna Joins CARD in Supporting Golf for Autism Event

CBS' "Criminal Minds" star Joe Mantegna has announced he will play in and co-host Autism Care and Treatment's (ACT Today!) 4th Annual Charity Golf Tournament on Monday, May 17, 2010.

The event, brought to you by the Center for Autism and Related Disorders, Inc. (CARD), will be held at Braemar Country Club, located at 4001 Reseda Boulevard in Tarzana, California. Mantegna will co-host the tournament alongside actor Grant Reynolds (right-below), who stars on FOX Reality Channel's "Househusbands of Hollywood."

"We are grateful that Joe and Grant can participate in this year's tournament," says Tournament Director and ACT Today! founding member Stefan de Nocker. "They are both passionate about autism awareness and making sure that children with autism children get the necessay and quality care and treatment they need."

One in 110 children in America is diagnosed with autism. Autism is more prevalent than pediatric cancer, AIDS, and diabetes combined. Funds raised through ACT Today!'s 4th Annual Charity Golf Tournament will help provide therapy, social skills groups, biomedical treatment, helmets and more for children whose parents can not afford to provide these necessary tools for their child to live a productive life.

The 4th Annual Golf Tournament will begin with check-in and breakfast buffet at 9:30am, followed by a Putting Contest at 10:15am, and a Shot-Gun start at 11am. Players will enjoy an open fire BBQ lunch on the course, as well as complimentary ice cold beverages, snacks, and more throughout the day, including Beat the Pro contests and opportunities to win big prizes! Cocktail Hour and Silent Auction will begin at 4pm, with a seated dinner/live auction/awards, and entertainment starting at 5:30pm. The evening will be hosted by Actors Joe Mantegna, Grant Reynolds and Racecar Driver/Model/Broadcaster Ashley Van Dyke. Special appearances will be made by the LA Laker Girls.

Single-$250 Foursome-$800

Dinner Only - $50

Mantegna and Reynolds will be joined by other celebrities including (as April 08, 2010) Mickey Jones of "Tin Cup" and "Home Improvement;" Ron Masak of "Murder She Wrote," TV/Film Actors Mark Christopher Lawrence and Deitrich Bader of NBC hit show "Chuck," Model/Broadcaster/race Car Driver Ashley Van Dyke, Former Race Car Driver/Champion Charles Downes, TV/Film Actor Basil Wallace of Oscar Nominated Movie "Blood Diamond," World - renowned autism expert and CARD Founder Dr. Doreen Granpeesheh, TV/Film Actor David Leisure, TV/Film Actress Paula Trickey, TV/Film Actor Ron Perlman and Robert Hays.

Sponsors (as of April 08, 2010) of the 4th Annual Charity Golf Tournament include: Center for Autism and Related Disorders, Inc. (CARD), TWIW Insurance, United Healthcare, Apothe'Cure, Inc., GolfSmith, Five Star Golf, Carole Young Brooke Foundation, Hope Wine, Food Should Taste So Good, Wines for Autism, Ener-G Foods, Mandalay Bay; Murad, Inc, City National Bank, The Littlest Golfer, Wendy's, Capital Retirement Group, Lockheed Federal Credit Union, Anhueser-Busch, Allied Beverages, Arthur Murray Dance Studio, Players' Golf Club, Bradford Portraits, Kirsch, Kohn & Bridge; Anderson, Knox & Clark, and West Coast Cuts & Colors.

For more information about ACT Today's 4th Annual Charity Golf Tournament, visit

For more information about registration, sponsorship, and donation please contact Daphne at

Autism Study Reveals a 'DNA Tag' (Methylation) Amenable to Treatment

ScienceDaily (Apr. 8, 2010) — A new discovery raises hope that autism may be more easily diagnosed and that its effects may be more reversible than previously thought. In a new study appearing online in The FASEB Journal, scientists have identified a way to detect the disorder using blood and have discovered that drugs which affect the methylation state ("DNA tagging") of genes could reverse autism's effects. This type of drug is already being used in some cancer treatments.

"As the mother of a now 22-year-old son with an autism spectrum disorder, I hope that our studies as well as those of others, will lead to therapies that are designed to address specific deficiencies that are caused by autism, thus improving the lives of affected individuals," said Valerie W. Hu, Ph.D., one of the researchers involved in the work from the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology at The George Washington University Medical Center in Washington, D.C. "Since autism is very diverse in the array of symptoms present in any given individual, it is first necessary to be able to identify specific deficits in each individual in order to design and then prescribe the best treatment. As an example of this personalized approach to medicine, we identified RORA as one of the genes that was altered specifically in the sub group of autistic individuals who exhibited severe language deficits."

To make their discovery, Hu and colleagues identified chemical changes in DNA taken from cells of identical twins and sibling pairs, in which only one of the twins or siblings was diagnosed with autism. The researchers then compared genes that showed changes in DNA tagging (methylation) with a list of genes that showed different levels of expression from these same individuals. Then the scientists studied the amount of protein product produced by two genes that appear on both lists in autistic and control regions of the cerebellum and frontal cortex of the brain. They found that both proteins, as predicted by the observed increase in DNA tagging, were reduced in the autistic brain. This suggests that blocking the chemical tagging of these genes may reverse symptoms of the disorder and demonstrates the feasibility of using more easily accessible cells from blood (or other non-brain tissues) for diagnostic screening.

"For far too long, autism research has been side-tracked by the cranky notion that it's caused by the MMR vaccine," said Gerald Weissmann, M.D., Editor-in-Chief of The FASEB Journal. "Studies like this, which define genetic and epigenetic changes in discrete subgroups of the autism spectrum, offer real hope that effective treatments and accurate diagnosis are closer at hand."

Gastrointestinal Problems Common in Children With Autism

ScienceDaily (May 3, 2010) — Parents of children and adolescents with autism spectrum disorders (ASDs) sometimes report that their children suffer from gastrointestinal (GI) symptoms, such as diarrhea and constipation. However, studies on how prevalent these symptoms are have had conflicting results.

A new study conducted by Autism Speaks' Autism Treatment Network (ATN) shows that GI symptoms occur in nearly half of children with ASD, and the prevalence increases as children get older.

Results of the study, and three others conducted by the ATN, were presented on May 2 at the Pediatric Academic Societies (PAS) annual meeting in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.

An estimated one in 110 U.S. children has autism, a group of complex developmental brain disorders that affect behavior, social skills and communication.

The ATN, which includes 14 treatment and research centers in the United States and Canada, enrolls patients ages 2-18 years with a diagnosis of autism, Asperger's syndrome or pervasive developmental disorder-not otherwise specified.

In this study, researchers sought to determine how frequently parents of children enrolled in the network reported GI symptoms and what factors might be associated with these symptoms. Families filled out a battery of questionnaires, including a GI symptom inventory tailored to the needs of nonverbal children, a behavior checklist, sleep questionnaire and quality of life survey.

Data from 1,185 children showed that 45 percent had GI symptoms at the time of enrollment, with abdominal pain, constipation and diarrhea reported most commonly. Reports of symptoms were more common in older children (39 percent of children under 5 years of age vs. 51 percent of children 7 and older).

In addition, children with GI symptoms had a higher rate of sleep problems than those without GI issues (70 percent vs. 30 percent), more behavior problems and an overall lower health-related quality of life.

No relationship was found between GI symptoms and type of autism, gender, race or IQ.

"These findings suggest that better evaluation of GI symptoms and subsequent treatment may have benefits for these patients," said Daniel Coury, MD, medical director of the ATN and professor of pediatrics and psychiatry at The Ohio State University. "Primary care physicians and specialists should ask families about these symptoms and address these as part of the overall management plan for the child or adolescent with ASD."

Autism Speaks' Autism Treatment Network (ATN) is the first network of hospitals and physicians dedicated to developing a model of comprehensive medical care for children and adolescents with autism. The ATN offers families care from doctors highly experienced in helping individuals with autism and providing treatment for associated conditions such as gastrointestinal and sleep disorders, while disseminating best practices to the greater medical community.

Join CARD Founder and Executive Director Dr. Doreen Granpeesheh ...

Join CARD Founder and Executive Director Dr. Doreen Granpeesheh at the following upcoming events…

Defeat Autism Now! Conference

April 09-11, 2010

Baltimore, Maryland

Topic: The Child as a Whole: Why Biomedical and Behavioral Interventions are Both Critical to Growth and Recovery


Pill-Swallowing Clinic, Suppository Administration & An Introduction to Methyl B-12 Injections

For more information on the conference, visit: .

Autism Around the World Symposium

May 06-08, 2010

Dubai, United Arab Emirates

Topic: The Child as a Whole: Why Biomedical and Behavioral Interventions are Both Critical to Growth and Recovery

For more information on the event schedule, visit:

Autism One Conference
May 26-30, 2010
Chicago, Illinois

For more information on the event schedule,

International Autism Conference
July 05-06, 2010
Jerusalem, Israel
Topic: Curriculum for People with ASDs/ An International Model of Service Delivery for People with ASDs

For more information on the event schedule, visit:

For a list of all other upcoming events around the world,


About Doreen Granpeesheh, PhD, BCBA-D:

Dr. Granpeesheh has dedicated thirty years to helping individuals with autism lead healthy, productive lives. Dr. Granpeesheh is known throughout the world as an expert in the field of autism research and treatment. Specific areas of expertise and research include curriculum development from early intervention through the early stages of adulthood, diagnostic, developmental and behavioral assessment, higher order skill acquisition, long‐term outcomes, and the effects of medical interventions in conjunction with behavioral programs. She has trained thousands of professionals and families on her treatment techniques and curriculum, leading to a faster dissemination of quality treatment information.

Through her active participation and direction in research, curriculum development and treatment, Dr. Granpeesheh has consistently demonstrated the effectiveness of Applied Behavior Analysis intervention. She has not only helped tens of thousands of families, but has successfully helped many children and young adults attain their highest potential, giving further merit to the notion that autism is treatable and that affected individuals can lead independent, meaningful lives.


On December 18, 2007, the United Nations General Assembly adopted resolution 62/139, tabled by the State of Qatar, which declares April 2 as World Autism Awareness Day (WAAD) in perpetuity. Her Highness Sheikha Mozah Bint Nasser Al-Missned, Consort of His Highness Sheikh Hamad Bin Khalifa Al-Thani, the Emir of the State of Qatar, supported the campaign for a World Autism Awareness Day through the current 62nd UN General Assembly Session, garnering consensus support from all United Nations Member States.

This UN resolution is one of only three official disease-specific United Nations Days and will bring the world’s attention to autism, a pervasive disorder that affects tens of millions. The World Autism Awareness Day resolution encourages all Member States to take measures to raise awareness about autism throughout society and to encourage early diagnosis and early intervention. It further expresses deep concern at the prevalence and high rate of autism in children in all regions of the world and the consequent developmental challenges.

World Autism Awareness Day shines a bright light on autism as a growing global health crisis. WAAD activities help to increase and develop world knowledge of the autism epidemic and impart information regarding the importance of early diagnosis and early intervention. Additionally, WAAD celebrates the unique talents and skills of persons with autism and is a day when individuals with autism are warmly welcomed and embraced in community events around the globe.

By bringing together autism organizations all around the world, we will give a voice to the millions of individuals worldwide who are undiagnosed, misunderstood and looking for help. Please join us in our effort to inspire compassion, inclusion and hope.