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US Autism & Asperger Association, Inc. September 9, 2008

Welcome to USAAA Weekly News, an email newsletter that addresses a range of topics on Autism Spectrum Disorders and Asperger's Syndrome.


American Medical Autism Board Launched
First of its kind board / diplomate certification program for autism spectrum disorders

Cleveland, OH - Dr. Phillip C. DeMio, Chairman of the American Medical Autism Board, announced the commencement of the newly founded American Medical Autism Board (www.asdboards.org) at the US Autism & Asperger Association annual conference this past week in Austin, Texas. “This is the first of its kind board / diplomate certification program for medical doctors specializing in biomedical treatment of autism and related disorders,” explained Dr. DeMio.

“Medical doctors who become certified by the American Medical Autism Board (AMAB) show that they specialize in biomedical treatment of autism spectrum disorders, and will have met the Board’s high levels of criteria for training and experience, and will have passed its rigorous certification examination,” said Dr. DeMio. “The biomedical concept means that autism and the autism spectrum disorders are not primary psychiatric or behavioral disorders, rather they are medical diseases with a biologic basis to their cause and to their ongoing manifestations (such as pain, gastrointestinal problems, and immune dysfunction).”

AMAB board-certified members provide biomedical evaluation and/or treatment to individuals of all ages diagnosed with autism spectrum disorders, Asperger's syndrome, AD/HD, OCD, and PDD’s. Through its credentialing process, AMAB offers both the public and private sectors an avenue for identifying well-qualified professionals trained and experienced in the biomedical assessment and treatment of autism spectrum disorders.

Thousands of families that have an affected child will now have access to certified specialists in biomedical autism treatments

Thousands of families that have an affected child will now have access to certified specialists in biomedical autism treatments; verification that AMAB physicians are up to date on the newest treatments and research;
dedication to high quality patient care; and, verification of exceptional knowledge, experience, and skills in their specialty.

About American Medical Autism Board
The American Medical Autism Board® (AMAB) is an independent non-profit incorporated certifying organization. The mission of the American Medical Autism Board is to promote safe, ethical, efficacious medical autism treatment to the public by maintaining high standards for the examination and certification of physicians as autism medical specialists. The mission of AMAB is to contribute to understanding the etiology diagnosis, and treatment of autism spectrum disorders, with the goal of improving the lives of affected individuals and their loved ones.

Contact information:
information@asdboards.com
www.asdboards.org


An epidemiological analysis of the ‘autism as mercury poisoning’ hypothesis

David Austin
Life and Social Sciences, Swinburne University of Technology, Melbourne, Australia

International Journal of Risk & Safety in Medicine 20 (2008) 135–142
DOI 10.3233/JRS-2008-0436
IOS Press

Abstract.
Where direct experimental research into a causal hypothesis of a disease is impossible due to ethical and practical considerations, epidemiological inference is the accepted route to establishing cause. Therefore, to examine the autism as mercury poisoning hypothesis, this paper reviews the existing scientific literature within the context of established epidemiological criteria and finds that the evidence for a causal relationship is compelling. Exposure to mercury (via vaccines and maternal dental amalgam) in utero and during infant years is confirmed; mercury poisoning is known to cause symptoms consistent with autism; animal modeling supports the link and, critically, mercury levels are higher in both the urine and blood of autistic children than in non-autistic peers. Analogous to epidemiological evidence of the smoking–lung cancer relationship, a mercury–autism relationship is confirmed.

...it would be negligent to continue to expose pregnant and nursing mothers and infant children to any amount of avoidable mercury.

The precautionary principle demands that health professionals not take an action if there is suspicion that the action may cause severe or lifelong health effects: it does not require certainty. Therefore, given the severity, devastating lifelong impact and extremely high prevalence of autism, it would be negligent to continue to expose pregnant and nursing mothers and infant children to any amount of avoidable mercury.

Click here for entire article.

Analysis by Dr. Mark Geier
The new in-depth analysis review article, "An Epidemiological Analysis of the 'Autism as Mercury Poisoning' Hypothesis" from the peer-reviewed International Journal of Risk & Safety in Medicine by Dr. David Austin, professor of Life and Social Science, Swinburne University of Technology, Melbourne, Australia, states, "Therefore, to examine the autism as mercury poisoning hypothesis, this paper reviews the existing scientific literature within the context of established epidemiological criteria and finds that the evidence for a causal relationship is compelling.

...that researchers from multiple different universities, on 4 different continents...have now described a causal role for mercury, and in particular Thimerosal, and its relationship with autism and other neurodevelopmental disorders.

To put this new study in context, it means that researchers from multiple different universities, on 4 different continents (including: North America, South America, Europe, and Australia) have now described a causal role for mercury, and in particular Thimerosal, and its relationship with autism and other neurodevelopmental disorders.


 

USAAA Conference Highlights

Dr. Phillip C. DeMio (USAAA Chief Medical Officer), Dr. Lawrence P. Kaplan (USAAA Chairman and Founder), Holly Robinson Peete (Actress, Author, Singer, and USAAA 2008 Keynote Speaker), Gail B. Kaplan, Theresa K. Wrangham (USAAA Director of Education/Conference Liaison)

A complete recap of the conference will published in the next newsletter.
— Holly Robinson Peete kicks off conference with Keynote address.
— Dr. DeMio announces formation of American Medical Autism Board.
— Dr. Mark Geier and David Geier present for the first time, "New Clinical Study on Mercury Body-Burden, Severity, & Transsulfuration Biomarkers in Autism Spectrum Disorders", "New Human Neuronal & Fetal Tissue Culture Study Examines the Toxicity of Thimerosal", and The Genetic Centers of America Launches National Outreach Program for Patients with Autistic Disorders; Plan to Open New Autism Treatment Center in Texas.
— Dr. Valerie Paradiz, Dr. Stephen Shore and Marlo Payne Thurman present “Autism: Impact on Education," a full day workshop that was the first of its kind to be offered nationally within an autism conference format.
— Dr. Doris Rapp's first national autism presentation
— Sibling Panel Discussion
— Parent Practitioner Panel Discussion
— Concert pianist Michael Schneider's incredible performance at the USAAA dinner
Plus much more.

Click here to get all your conference DVDs including Holly Robinson Peete's Keynote Address

 
GET YOUR DVDs from the
2008 USAAA International Conference
Click here to get all your conference DVDs including Holly Robinson Peete's Keynote Address

 

In This Issue:

American Medical Autism Board Launched

An epidemiological analysis of the ‘autism as mercury poisoning’ hypothesis

USAAA Conference Highlights

Comments from Presidential Positions on ASD

Click here for Conference DVDs


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Inbox Readers' Comments are opinions from our subscribers. USAAA is not responsible for the content, accuracy or opinions expressed in this section.

USAAA WeeklyNews encourages readers to send guest columns for publication in our WeeklyNews. These op-eds should address timely topics of autism and Asperger's Syndrome to readers and must not exceed 600 words. Not all we receive can be published. Those that represent a well-reasoned argument, supported by evidence, in a concise and readable manner will receive priority.

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Comments from Presidential Positions on ASD

Thank you for the information you provided regarding the Presidential candidates position on ASD. I found Obama to have the most detailed and comprehensive plan. As an insider to the needs of individuals affected by autism, the families and professionals who love them, I found his position to address the concerns of the community with real and practical solutions. Unfortunately I found the language in McCain's statement to be cliché and lacking of lifespan solutions. Although I believe research of the cause is important- I think besides answers, we want the applied solutions available immediately and without the hassle of fighting for the rights already available. I think pouring all efforts into research ignores the needs of the entire lifespan of the individual and their family. — Michelle

In response to the article on Presidential hopefuls debating on autism, I would like to say that it is great to hear that the issue of autism is becoming widely recognized however, it isn't just about screening for and supporting education that is already in place for children on the spectrum; it is also for the kids that are growing up and entering college and the work force. As a parent of a 12 year old with high functioning autism, I find that there is just not enough help with maneuvering thru the higher level educational system. It would also be helpful if larger corporations were to be made aware of the best way to communicate with individuals with ASD. These high functioning ASD children that are becoming adults are often times very academically brilliant but do have difficulties with peer interaction and social skills. Even though, they are still very much an asset to corporations for the genius level of contributions they can make. My son is brilliant. He is a math genius and a IT wizard but if he had to interview with a company under the "norm" of interview process he might not get the job and the company would have lost out on a brilliant talented individual. I ask both McCain and Obama to think past just diagnosis and prevention but also in how to best serve the children with autism as they become young adults and are trying to enter the University level educational system as well as corporate environments. — LeAnn

The Combat Autism Act of 2006 is a great, concrete and successful initiative Mr. Mc.Cain achieved. Whoever wins the election, I think that issues as health research and social support for disabled individuals should be treated in a comprehensive, cooperative and integrated way by both parties. Don't they both have the same purpose and goals? Then if they can't solve those as a team effort, what could we expect for more material or irrelevant matters. Parties should take advantage of health and social issues to develop common goals and effective team work.
— Amalia

It is clear to me that Barack Obama is one that will help these kids, throughout the U.S. One of the first things that caught my attention was the fact he was going to appoint a Federal ASD Coordinator to Oversee all Federal ASD efforts, then Support Special Needs Education, Support Universal Screening, and Fully Fund the Combating Autism Act and Federal Autism Research Initiatives. If all or even a part of this gets done it will be a help for so many families; like my own. — Yvonne

While McCain's plan seems small in simple compared to all the words in Obama's plan, Obama's plan never once mentions research into environmental factors causing autism. I feel that is leaving the biggest part out. McCain is on the right track. — Kathryn

I am glad that both candidates are aware of the issues regarding the needs of the many children with special needs, especially those with autism. I feel that Obama's idea of forming another department to oversee what is being done about autism creates more bureaucracy and wasted money that can be used directly with those (many private non-profit organizations) from using those funds to properly research to cure and prevent autism now and in the future. As for McCain's support in ongoing research and with his new running mate, Sarah Palin I believe they will place more emphasis on helping the currently affected children and adults and also work to help prevent disabilities in the future. — Kingston

McCain's statement is only about research, while Obama has included support, such as early intervention. McCain's direction is to cut funding for Medicare & Medicaid for already suffering families. — Yoko



   

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