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CSO Perspectives: Join Our Team to Tackle Autism Spectrum Disorder Research

Published on February 1, 2018 in Cornerstone Blog · Last updated 1 year 1 month ago


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With the entire city soaring from the Eagles Championship win, we can feel even better that our home team also has a heart for research. So take your Eagles fandom to the next level by joining your colleagues, patients, friends, and family on Team CHOP Research in the Eagles Autism Challenge. Not only will you help fund breakthroughs made right here at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia for the thousands of children and families who are affected by autism, but you will have the opportunity to celebrate on the field with the NFC Champions themselves!

ASD remains one of the fastest-growing developmental disorders in the U.S., with one in 68 children affected and one in 42 boys — all of whom will become adults navigating life on the autism spectrum, with varying degrees of independence. The causes of ASD are still unclear, and there is no cure. Every year, thousands of children with ASD and their families place their trust in CHOP’s capable and skilled researchers, clinicians, and other specialists who create individualized care plans to address each child’s challenges and build on their strengths.

As an executive champion of the Eagles Autism Challenge, I invite you to participate with Team CHOP Research May 19 in a one-day bike race, 5K run, and family-friendly walk that will provide the resources and support to unite a multi-faceted, world-class autism research coalition. One hundred percent of the funds raised will support autism research, clinical, and support programs at CHOP, Drexel University, and Thomas Jefferson University and Jefferson Health.

Our goal: Bring together top researchers and scientists in the field to drive powerful discoveries and develop innovative treatments that will allow every child with ASD to live life as fully as possible. Our game plan: Collaborate.

Collaboration generates the fresh perspective and momentum required to take research leaps that will carry evidence-based autism care into the “end zone,” where it will help families who are struggling with unanswered questions about ASD’s origins, early interventions, strategies during the school years, and transitioning to adulthood.

At CHOP, we are proud to have one of the most highly esteemed autism research centers in the country. In collaboration with diverse clinical and research divisions across CHOP, the Center for Autism Research has already made great strides in our understanding of the earliest signs of ASD in the brains of infants; led CHOP to have the highest rate of autism screening among toddlers in the country; and developed digital behavioral screening tools that have the potential to revolutionize autism diagnosis and treatment. Capitalizing on the technology and infrastructure established by the Roberts Collaborative for Genetics and Individualized Medicine and as a research site in the Simons SPARK study, CHOP is also poised to advance our understanding of the complicated genetics of autism that have kept its origins a mystery for decades.

We will push more research insights like these forward and get closer to unlocking the mysteries of autism, with every pedal and every step at the Eagles Autism Challenge. Runners and walkers will experience a one-of-a-kind course taking them through Lincoln Financial Field and the surrounding neighborhood. The cycling routes travel through Philadelphia and its suburbs. In addition, the Eagles have announced that for every new bike participant who registers between now and the kickoff of Superbowl LII, they will match all funds raised (up to $50K total).

It takes a team effort to tackle autism. Find out more about how you can help us reach our team goal on CAR’s web presence.