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World Autism Awareness Day Webinar 2023

2 Apr 2023, 14:00 (CEST)

Autism, Autism Awareness, Autism Education
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Welcome Message

In order to commemorate World Autism Awareness Day 2023 (, MDPI is launching a special webinar to encourage researchers to join together, take action, and raise awareness as to how the exchange of findings facilitates efforts to raise awareness about autism.

Over the past decade, major progress has been made towards increasing access to education generally, as well as for persons with autism specifically.

The webinar aims to encourage connection and collaboration among autism researchers and the international open access community to help improved the life of autistic people.

We are very much looking forward to seeing you at the World Autism Awareness Day 2023. Please find below an up-to-date outline of invited speakers.

Conference Secretariat
Ms Shun Li

Invited Speakers

Section of High Resolution Brain Positron Emission Tomography Imaging,
Division of Nuclear Medicine and Molecular Imaging,
The Russell H. Morgan Department of Radiology and Radiological Science,
The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, MD, USA,
Section Board Member of Brain Sciences (ISSN: 2076-3425),
Guest Editor of IJMS ( ISSN: 1422-0067)

Dr. James Brasic is a neurologist and child and adolescent psychiatrist who conducts clinical translational investigations of autism spectrum disorder and other neuropsychiatric conditions. As an assistant professor of radiology and radiological science and neurology at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine in Baltimore, Maryland, United States of America, he utilizes positron emission tomography (PET) and other multimodal techniques to improve the diagnosis and treatment of subtypes of autism spectrum disorder (idiopathic autism spectrum disorder and fragile X and Rett syndromes) and other nervous and mental disorders. He is leading international teams to the investigate the pathophysiology of autism spectrum disorder and other neurodevelopmental disabilities as well as Parkinson’s disease and related conditions. He welcomes opportunities for collaboration with colleagues around the world on studies to diagnose, treat, cure, and ultimately prevent autism spectrum disorder and other neurodevelopmental and neurodegenerative disorders. He will deliver a prepared speech entitled “Developing a relaxation response to catastrophes.”

Department of Neurobiology and Anatomy, Drexel University College of Medicine, 2900 Queen Lane, Philadelphia, PA 19129, USA,
Section Board Member of Brain Sciences (ISSN: 2076-3425),
Guest Editor of IJMS (ISSN: 1422-0067)

Dr. Toyooka is an assistant professor in the Department of Neurobiology and Anatomy at Drexel University College of Medicine. After completing his doctoral studies at Osaka University, Japan, he completed postdoctoral fellowships at the University of California San Diego and the University of California San Francisco. Additionally, he was a faculty member at Osaka City University School of Medicine in Japan. Since 2013, he has been a faculty member in the Department of Neurobiology and Anatomy of Drexel University College of Medicine.

Medical Geneticist, Mitochondrial and Molecular Medicine, 630 S Raymond Ave, Unit 310, Pasadena, CA 91105, USA,
Director of the NeuroGenomics Program at NeurAbilities,
Chief Medical & Scientific Officer of NeuroNeeds,
Section Board Member of JPM (ISSN: 2075-4426)

Dr. Boles is a Medical Geneticist with expertise in mitochondrial, other metabolic disorders, and channelopathies. He completed medical school at UCLA, a pediatric residency at Harbor-UCLA, and a genetics fellowship at Yale. Dr. Boles’ clinical and research focus has been on the genetics of common neurological disorders, including autism, ADHD, chronic pain, fatigue, and cyclic vomiting. He has over 90 published papers. Dr. Boles was the Medical Director of a DNA sequencing laboratory for 6 years. He currently is the Director of the NeuroGenomics Program at NeurAbilities, where he applies whole DNA sequencing to determine the cause of disease in his patients. Dr. Boles is also the Chief Medical & Scientific Officer of NeuroNeeds, a company that produces natural nutritional products to assist people with neurological conditions, including autism and other conditions listed above.

Autism Discovery and Treatment Foundation, Phoenix AZ,
Editorial Board Member of JPM (ISSN: 2075-4426)

Accumulating evidence suggests that many neurodevelopmental disorders start prenatally with a strong influence of the maternal environment. Two of the major convergent physiological pathways that appear to affect neurodevelopment prenatally are folate metabolism and mitochondria. Several abnormalities of folate metabolism have a significant influence in neurodevelopment, including single nucleotide polymorphism and the autoantibodies to the folate receptor alpha. Evidence suggests that these same mechanisms that affect neurodevelopment during the post-natal period can also affect the neurodevelopment of the fetus during gestation. Interestingly, both mechanisms disrupting folate metabolism appear to have inherited components. These factors have significant implications for the optimal type and amount of folate provided prenatally for optimal development. Several prenatal factors associated with neurodevelopmental disorders, including toxins, nutrients and inflammation can affect mitochondrial function. Emerging evidence suggests that these factors can affect mitochondrial function prenatally, potentially programing variation in mitochondrial function which can be long lasting well into childhood. Some of these changes in mitochondrial function may predispose children to have later neurodevelopmental regression. Thus, these and other critical pathways for prenatal development are critically important for optimal neurodevelopment. The evidence for these abnormalities and potential methods for intervention will be discussed.
Dr Frye is a Child Neurologist with expertise in neurodevelopmental and neurometabolic disorders. He received an MD and PhD in Physiology and Biophysics from Georgetown University. He completed a residency in Pediatrics at the University of Miami, Residency in Child Neurology and Fellowship in Behavioral Neurology and Learning Disabilities at Harvard University/Children’s Hospital Boston and Fellowship in Psychology at Boston University. He also received a Masters in Biomedical Science and Biostatistics from Drexel University. He holds board certifications in Pediatrics, and in Neurology with Special Competence in Child Neurology. He has authored over 300 publications and book chapters and serves on several editorial boards and is the former Editor-in-Chief for the Section on Mechanisms of Diseases of the Journal of Personalized Medicine. Dr. Frye is a national leader in autism spectrum disorder (ASD) research. He has lead several clinical studies on children with ASD, including studies focusing on defining the clinical, behavioral, cognitive, genetic and metabolic characteristics of children with ASD and mitochondrial disease and several clinical trials demonstrating the efficacy of safe and novel treatments that target underlying physiological abnormalities in children with ASD, including open-label studies on tetrahydrobiopterin, cobalamin and leucovorin and a recent double-blind placebo controlled trial on leucovorin. His ongoing research efforts focus on defining metabolic endophenotypes of children with ASD and developing targeted treatments.



Time in CEST

Introduction 11:00pm - 11:10pm
Dr. James Brasic
Developing a relaxation response to catastrophes

11.10pm - 11:30pm
Dr. Kazuhito Toyooka
ADNP, the gene responsible for autism and ADNP syndrome, regulates neuromorphogenesis,
neural connectivity and activity during cortical development.

11:30pm - 11:50am
Dr. Richard Boles
Genetic Testing in Autism Improving Diagnostics, Treatment, and Outcomes

11:50pm -12:10am
Dr. Richard E. Frye
The role of mitochondria and folate in prenatal health and offspring neurodevelopment
12:10am - 12:30am
Q&A 12:30am - 01:00am

Special Issues

Behavioral Sciences
Training and Education in Children with Autism
Edited By: Alessandro Frolli, Angelo Rega and Maria Carla Ricci
DDL: 30 June 2023

Glutamate and Glutamate Receptors in Health and Diseases
Edited By: Jolanta H. Kotlińska and Marta Marszalek-Grabska
DDL:30 September 2023

Brain Sciences
Sexuality in Autism Spectrum Disorders: Past, Present and Innovative Perspectives
Edited By: Rocco Salvatore Calabrò and Giovanni Pioggia
DDL: 25 July 2023

Molecular Genetics of Neuropsychiatric Diseases
Edited By: Yingwei Mao and Xin Tang
DDL: 8 March 2024

Neuropathology: From Molecular Mechanisms to Therapeutic Solutions
Edited By: Wenqiang Fan and Xingping Qin
DDL: 31 July 2023

Technology for People with Disabilities: Opportunities and Challenges
Edited By: Angelo Rega and Alessandro Frolli
DDL: 30 June 2023

Genes, Phenotypes and Molecular Mechanisms for Personalized Medicine in Autism
Edited By: M. E. Suzanne Lewis
DDL: 20 June 2023

Research on Autism in Children
Edited By: Andrey Vyshedskiy
DDL: 31 August 2023

A Personalized Medicine Approach to the Diagnosis and Management of Autism Spectrum Disorder: Beyond Genetic Syndromes
Edited By: Richard E. Frye, Richard G. Boles, Daniel Rossignol and Shannon Rose
DDL: 10 June 2023

Steroid Hormones, Oxidative Stress, Mitochondrial Dysfunction Unsolving the Enigma of Autism?
Edited By: Benedikt Andreas Gasser and Markus G. Mohaupt
DDL:31 July 2023

Atypical Autism: Causes, Diagnosis, and Current Treatment
Edited By: Rekha Jagadapillai
DDL:15 October 2023

Bioactive Lipids and Cannabinoids, Key Players in Neuropsychiatric Disorders and Beyond
Edited By: Giuseppe Di Giovanni and Mauro Maccarrone
DDL: 31 August 2023

Disorders of Cognition and Behavior
Edited By: Satwant Kumar
DDL:30 April 2023

Effects of Polyunsaturated Fatty Acids on Brain Metabolism and Neurodevelopment
Edited By: Dhavamani Sugasini
DDL: 20 July 2023

Neurodegenerative Diseases: Advances in Understanding Mechanisms and Development of Therapies
Edited By: Shao-bin Wang and Zhongshan Cheng
DDL: 30 June 2023

Drug Treatment For Autism
Edited By: Maryam Ardalan
DDL: 31 May 2023

Feature Papers—Multidisciplinary Sciences 2023
Edited By: Claus Jacob and Ahmad Yaman Abdin
DDL: 31 December 2023

Machine Learning Methods for Bio-Medical Image and Signal Processing: Recent Advances
Edited By: Lipo Wang
DDL: 15 November 2023

Association of Environmental Exposures with Mental and Cognitive Health
Edited By: Hicran Altug, Tamara Schikowski and Rachel Tham
DDL: 5 April 2023