It’s World Autism Month. One in 68 children in the United States have been diagnosed with an autism spectrum disorder. Now researchers are studying whether a first-of-its kind drug could make a difference for them.
Dr. Eric Hollander, Director of the Autism and Obsessive-Compulsive Spectrum Program at Montefiore Medical Center has patients in the study.
“There are not any approved treatments for what we think of as the core symptoms of autism, so all of the social difficulties, repetitive behaviors and the ability to function in everyday life,” he explains.
The study aims to determine whether the drug, Balovaptan, can help autism symptoms by preventing a molecule, thought to influence social behavior, from binding to brain receptors. Previous research on adults shows symptoms improved.
Researchers are enrolling high functioning children and teens at this time because they can better communicate about their symptoms.