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    FEAT BC Admin

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    Passing along a story from the FEAT Sacramento newsletter.


    Brick Study Calls For Epidemiology Research: NAAR

    The National Alliance for Autism Research (NAAR) calls upon the
    National Institutes of Health and the Centers for Disease Control and
    Prevention to launch a nationwide survey of the rates of autism in light of
    a startling new study that shows an unusually high prevalence of children
    affected by the disorder in Brick Township, New Jersey.
    The long-awaited study of children between ages 3 and 10 living in
    Brick Township, released Tuesday by the CDC, found 6.7 per 1,000 – or one in
    every 150 children – were affected by a range of autism disorders, including
    those who are mildly affected by the condition to those who are severely
    impaired. The prevalence of children suffering from a more narrow definition
    of autism for the year of the study – 1998 – was 4 per 1,000.
    “The CDC’s findings are astonishing,” said Dr. Eric London, NAAR’s
    Vice President of Medical Affairs. “For decades, the generally accepted
    figure and the one cited most often in the medical literature was that less
    than one child per 1,000 was affected by autism.”
    In recent years, a number of studies outside the United States have
    estimated the prevalence of autism as one out of every 1,000 children for
    the narrow range and two out every 1,000 for the entire range of autism
    “The results of this study need to be put into a broader context,” Dr.
    London said. “This does not necessarily mean there is a ‘cluster’ of autism
    in Brick Township. The fact is that we simply do not have enough data to
    determine the prevalence of autism in this country. We do not know if this
    is an unusually high number or if it is representative of autism prevalence
    in the United States. Only through additional research will we be able to
    evaluate the strikingly high numbers found in Brick to determine if they
    reflect the overall population or if there are disparities in the rates in
    different geographic areas,” Dr. London said.
    “That is why we are calling on the NIH and the CDC to invest in an
    autism prevalence study.”
    The high rate of autism in Brick Township underscores the widespread
    concern within the autism community that the number of children with autism
    is not only significantly higher than previously believed but possibly on
    the increase.
    “This study used the strictest possible diagnostic criteria,” Dr.
    London said. “The high numbers found in Brick Township are undeniable.”
    The Brick Township study was initiated by the “Brick POSSE,” a group
    of parents spearheaded by Bobbi Gallagher who were alarmed at what appeared
    to be an especially large number of young children in their area diagnosed
    with autism that they feared could be linked to possible toxic environmental
    The POSSE collected data on the number of children affected by autism
    and in 1997, with the help of NAAR, contacted the New Jersey State
    Department of Health and Human Services.
    At the behest of Sen. Robert Toricelli and Rep. Chris Smith, the CDC
    and the federal Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR)
    developed a four-part plan that included the prevalence investigation, a
    review of the literature on environmental factors and autism, an
    investigation of environmental pathways for human exposure, and community
    education and involvement activities.
    In addition to the release of the prevalence investigation, the ATSDR’
    s report found three classes of chemicals that contaminated the township’s
    water supply at various points in time. Dr. London stated, “It would be
    difficult to link these or other chemicals to the causes of autism given our
    limited understanding of the neurobiology of autism.”
    Given the critical importance of this issue, NAAR will be funding a
    prevalence study in nearby Staten Island, an area where families are also
    concerned about the proximity to toxic waste sites.
    NAAR was founded in 1994 to fund biomedical research into the causes,
    prevention, treatment and cure of autism and related disorders. Since 1997,
    NAAR has committed over $3 million in grants to 50 scientists in the United
    States, Canada, Italy, Spain and Russia. NAAR has identified autism rates as
    a critical area of research.
    Eric London, M.D.
    Vice President-Medical Affairs
    National Alliance for Autism Research

    *** WHY YOU MAY WANT TO ***
    FEAT's Daily Newsletter: Each day we
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    David Chan

    If any one is going to the F.E.A.T. meeting in
    West Vancouver on Wednesday night, Cyntia
    Stark needs a ride from Vancouver. If you can
    give her a ride, Please call her at 827-0014


    Sharon Baxter

    Hi everyone,
    Here are the details for the next Behavioural Therapist Training Workshop-

    Date: May 13th, 2000
    Location: Simon Fraser University
    Maggie Benson Building
    Room # 2294
    Time: 9am-5pm
    Cost: $20.00 per person

    To register:
    1) call the FEAT of BC fax on demand # 513-7233, press 3,2,2 to get to the workshop location
    2)downlown load a form

    If you have any questions please call Sharon at 531-2467 and leave a message.

    Sharon Baxter


    Sharon Baxter

    RE: Behavioural Therapist Training Workshop

    The next workshop in the Lower Mainland has been scheduled for May 13th. This time the workshop is going to be held at SFU. This 1 day workshop is being held from 9am to 5pm. I will post another message to confirm the room number as soon as possible. Please note a registration form will not be available until such time as all the details have been confirmed (approximately a week's time). I wanted to let everyone know the date as many people have expressed an interest.

    If you have any question please call Sharon at 531-2467.

    Sharon Baxter & Rachel Russell



    a quick reminder note about the FEAT BC parent group meeting on Wednesday 03/15/00

    – 7:30PM at St. Francis in the Woods in West Vancouver. Anyone who needs a map, it can be faxed to you by calling 513-7233 or downloaded at

    New parents are welcome — please pass on the information.



    Interesting piece in the SUN a while back (coincidentally the day the discussion board broke down). For those who may have missed it, here is the text version.

    The clipping with photo can be viewed at


    Gould may have had autism

    Canadian Press

    Picture Of: Canadian Press files / AUTISTIC? Canadian pianist Glenn
    Gould relaxes during practice for one of his early performances in
    the late 1950s. Gould may have suffered from a mild form of autism.

    OTTAWA — Glenn Gould may have suffered from a mild form of autism,
    the keeper of the Gould archives says. The theory may explain both
    the pianist's musical genius and his eccentricities, which included
    an overfondness for scrambled eggs and an aversion to shaking hands.
    Timothy Maloney, a musicologist and director of the music division
    of the National Library of Canada, has worked for two years on a
    paper contending that the late virtuoso had a neurological disorder
    characterized by social deficiency, obsessiveness and intolerance of
    Maloney sees Gould's retirement from the concert stage at 31 as an
    effort to cope with the condition, Asperger's syndrome. "Every new
    hall, every new piano and every new person was extremely stressful
    to Gould," Maloney said in an interview at the National Library in
    Ottawa. "As he grew older, he needed to be at a remove from society.
    This is an arch example of an Asperger's sufferer."
    Maloney cites Gould's reclusiveness, obsessive work habits,
    prodigious memory, even his strict diet of scrambled eggs and
    arrowroot biscuits, as symptoms of the disorder.
    In Gould's time, many reviewers expressed irritation at his humming,
    rocking at the keyboard and conducting the orchestra when either
    hand was momentarily free. According to Maloney, "Gould could no
    more control such mannerisms than play the violin. They ruled him,
    not he them."
    Asperger's syndrome was named for Viennese doctor Hans Asperger, who
    published a paper in 1944 describing a pattern of behaviour in young
    boys. Although they demonstrated normal language and intelligence
    levels, they had deficiencies resembling autism in social and
    communication skills.


    Sharon Baxter

    Re: Autism Behavioural Therapist Training Workshop
    Presented by Sharon Baxter & Rachel Russell
    Sponsored by FEAT of BC

    The next workshop is planned for March 11, 2000 in Kamloops. Please call Darby Turner at 250-374-3760 for registration information or call the FEAT of BC switchboard at 604-513-7233 to have a registration form faxed to you. Also, see to download a registration form.

    Thanks,Sharon Baxter


    FEAT BC Admin

    Apologies from the FEAT BC Discussion Board

    Dear Feat BC Discussion Board Members:

    We would like to apologize to for the unintentional e-mail messages you received today from the board. They were inadvertently transmitted during our work to repair the board.

    The FEAT BC Discussion Board service provider was recently acquired by another company. The *migration* to the new server damaged the discussion board. We are working hard to make repairs and expect to have the board up and running again soon.

    Once again, we apologize for the inconvenience.

    Thank you.

    Isaac Tamir (Miki’s Dad)
    Board Admin.
    FEAT of BC

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