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NIH will use $60 million in Recovery Act funds to support strategic autism research
Date:3/24/2009

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) will commit roughly $60 million from American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) to support autism research and meet objectives set forth earlier this year by a federal advisory committee. The Request for Applications is the largest funding opportunity for research on autism spectrum disorders (ASD) to date and combined with other ARRA initiatives represents a surge in NIH's commitment to finding the causes and treatments for autism.

Four grant announcements, sharing a single title "Research to Address the Heterogeneity in Autism Spectrum Disorders," will use different funding mechanisms to support a range of research topics over the next two years. Examples of research topics include developing and testing diagnostic screening tools for different populations; assessing risk from prenatal or early life exposures; initiating clinical trials to test early interventions; or adapting existing, effective pediatric treatments for older children, teens, and adults with ASD. For a full listing of possible study topics, see the grant announcement listing in the NIH Guide (http://grants1.nih.gov/grants/guide/index.html). While few trials can be completed in two years, ARRA funds will be important for jumpstarting projects and building the infrastructure or foundation for longer-term autism research efforts.

These topics correspond directly to short-term research objectives detailed in the Interagency Autism Coordinating Committee's (IACC's) Strategic Plan for Autism Spectrum Disorder Research (http://iacc.hhs.gov/reports/2009/iacc-strategic-plan-for-autism-spectrum-disorder-research-jan26.shtml), released earlier this month. Comprising representatives of federal agencies and members of the public, the IACC coordinates efforts within the
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Contact: NIMH Press Office
NIMHPress@nih.gov
301-443-4536
NIH/National Institute of Mental Health
Source:Eurekalert

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