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Autism Symposium April 18 at Stanford University, Sponsored by Lucile Packard Children's Hospital Stanford

STANFORD, Calif. — Raising a child with autism, parents can become overwhelmed with information. News of possible therapies, novel brain-science discoveries, and individual anecdotes about others’ treatment experiences may leave parents wondering: What does this mean for my child?  

Lucile Packard Children's Hospital Stanford and Stanford Medicine Children’s Health are here to help parents find answers. On April 18, the hospital presents its eighth annual Autism Spectrum Disorders Update, an event that gives members of the community a chance to learn about new autism research and therapies. This year's theme, “Connecting the Dots: Clinical research for autism making a difference for our children,” is focused on helping parents understand how new autism research could affect their children’s lives.


Autism experts from Lucile Packard Children's Hospital, Stanford Medicine Children’s Health, the Stanford University School of Medicine and the local autism community will give presentations on a wide cross-section of topics. The day includes keynote sessions on fast-tracking diagnosis of autism, on recent breakthroughs in pivotal response treatment and early intervention, and on the potential of social hormones to help diagnose and treat autism. Additional breakout sessions will be offered on improving therapies through clinical trials; how brain science can help improve speech perception in children with autism; new findings in the genetics of autism; and brain science findings that may led to better autism drugs. The day will conclude with a session on cultivating mindfulness that is aimed at the needs of parents and other autism caregivers.

The complete program is online at


Frances C. Arrillaga Alumni Center, Stanford University, 326 Galvez St., Stanford, Calif.


Saturday, April 18, 2015, 8:15 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. (Registration and continental breakfast begin at 7:30 a.m.)


“Our theme this year is to show how clinical and scientific work at Stanford is actually helping people with autism,” said Carl Feinstein, MD, director of the Stanford Autism Center at Packard Children's Hospital and professor emeritus of psychiatry and behavioral sciences at the Stanford University School of Medicine. “Parents want to know: ‘What are you doing for my child? Explain it to me and show how it helps my child.’ And we strongly believe that it is part of our responsibility as scientists and clinicians to really engage with the community. We want parents to come away feeling that they’ve been heard.”


Parents, teachers, pediatricians, psychologists, caregivers and anyone with an interest in autism are invited to attend. The $125 registration fee includes a continental breakfast and a buffet lunch. Media may attend free of charge through the contact below.