2016 Autism Centers of Excellence (ACE) Investigator Meeting
Location: Bethesda, MD
Extramural investigators from the 3 centers and 9 networks that comprise the NIH Autism Centers of Excellence (ACE) Program, convened for their annual meeting at the NIH Neuroscience Center. The purpose of the meeting was to provide ACE investigators an opportunity to share the progress of their respective centers and networks, and to discuss current challenges and promising innovations that will lead the field of autism spectrum disorder (ASD) research forward in the coming years. The meeting began with a set of four open session presentations from ACE investigators on topics including the impact of epilepsy on developmental testing among infants affected by ASD, the advantages of utilizing adaptive interventions in studies of ASD, the strength of new targets and strategies for future studies of ASD interventions, and new approaches to measuring and quantifying the development of infants affected by ASD, at home and in research settings. The remainder of the meeting focused on research updates from the respective centers and networks as well as presentations from the FDA on regulatory factors that drive qualifications for biomarkers in ASD and an NIH presentation on the importance of rigor and reproducibility in NIH-funded research studies.