The Carolina Institute for Developmental Disabilities at UNC
The Carolina Institute includes:

Research Participant Registry Core

Bringing Together
Families & Researchers

Core Personnel & Contacts

Associate Director:
Renee Clark, M.S.W.
Family Recruitment Coordinator:
Mary Hannah Currin, B.A.
Registry Consent Specialist:
Macie Rush, B.S.

Thank you for your interest in research at UNC.

Announcements & Events

UNC TEACCH Autism Program Conference- Understanding Autism in the Early Years

October 3-4, 2019 at The Friday Center--Chapel Hill, NC
The 39th University of North Carolina TEACCH Autism Program Conference is designed to provide professionals and caregivers information about early identification of ASD and highlight interventions for children in the early years.
• Understand the neurobiological risk factors of early autism
• Learn models of early detection and research-based interventions
• Share methods for working with families of young children with autism
Conference Information

NC Fragile X Foundation Workshop: Empowering Families Impacted by FXS

Dr. Randi Hagerman, an internationally recognized expert in fragile X syndrome and related conditions, will present at this 1-day workshop.
"Carrier Related Issues: Learning How to Self-Regulate to Support Your Child"

Saturday November 9, 2019
8 am - 4 pm
The Event Center at Extraordinary Ventures 200 S. Elliot Road, Chapel Hill, NC 27514
Flyer and registration form

2019 Monthly Community Talk Series

Held on Wednesdays from 6:30 - 8 pm at the CIDD Building in Carrboro, NC.
Fall topics: Behavior Management, Transition to Adulthood, Able Accounts, Addressing Sexual Violence
Always free and informative. All are welcome.

Autism Parenting Magazine: Why It is Important to Embrace Autism Research

This post highlights the ways research can impact the daily lives of autistic individuals, how to find easy-to-understand articles, and how to recognize reputable and reliable results.

Video Archive of CIDD Community Talk Series

Slides and videos of past Community Talk Series presentations. Topics of interest for families and practitioners

Research Findings

2018 Summary of Advances in Autism Research

The Interagency Autism Coordinating Committee (IACC) selected two UNC studies for their list of scientific advances that represent significant progress in autism research. Dr. Joe Piven's Infant Brain Imaging Study (IBIS) and Dr. Laura Klinger's Autism in Adulthood Study have contributed important knowledge about individuals across the lifespan.

SPARK Snapshot 2: Adults with Autism

This is Report 2 from the SPARK for Autism Study. These are findings reported by the independent adults (do not have a guardian) who are participating in SPARK.

SPARK Snapshot 1

This is Report 1 from the SPARK for Autism Study. These are interesting findings from information that families have provided to the study.

UNC Researchers use MRIs to predict which high-risk babies will develop autism as toddlers

Researchers in the Infant Brain Imaging national network uses MRIs to image the brains of infants at high risk for autism. Findings show differences as early as 6 month in the children who later were diagnosed with autism. The network is continuing their efforts to understand brain differences in children at risk for autism. Their goal is to find ways to identify very young children at high risk of the disorder and to inform treatments to optimize developmental outcomes.

SPARK Study Results: Treatment Patterns in Children with Autism in the US

SPARK Research Match program matches families with studies they may want to join. These results are from a survey study about what types of treatment children ages 3 to 17 received (other than medication). More than 5,000 SPARK participants completed the survey.

The Fungicide Effect on Brain Cells

Mark Zylka’s research into chemicals altering gene transcription in neurons gains international attention. View video on this site.

2016 release: New autism prevalence rates in NC & USA announced

The North Carolina prevalence statistics are reported by Dr. Julie Daniels, director of the UNC North Carolina Surveillance site of the CDC Autism and Developmental Disabilities Monitoring Network.

TEACCH Long-Term Adult Outcomes: Project Summary

Preliminary findings from the survey of the Long-Term Outcomes study of adults who were diagnosed with an autism spectrum disorder by the TEACCH Autism Program between 1965 and 2000.

MRIs Link Impaired Brain Activity to Difficulty Regulating Emotions in Autism

A summary of recently published research findings from a UNC Functional Neuroimaging Study in the Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders

Health Issues in Fragile X Premutation Carriers

Dr. Marsha Mailick presented research findings at the 2019 NICHD Gatlinburg Conference. She used electronic medical records to study the health of males and females with the fragile X premutation gene (carriers). She found that FXS carriers experience more health difficulties over their life span when compared to the general population.

FPG Autism Researchers Release Evidence-Based Practices Update

The authors screened 29,000 articles to locate the soundest evidence-based interventions for children and youth with autism. A downloadable report

UNC scientists pinpoint how a single genetic mutation increases autism risk

An article published August 2015 describes discoveries about the mechanisms of a single gene mutation linked to autism.

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