EU-AIMS: European Autism Interventions - A Multicentre Study for Developing New Medications
Autism is a developmental disability that affects approximately 1-2% of the general population. In the current situation there is, however, no medical treatment for autism. Therefore, scientists from various European universities and pharmacological companies has decided to work together in order to find new ways to treat autism. This is why EU-AIMS (European Autism Interventions - A Multicentre Study for Developing New Medications) was launched. Till now, it is the biggest and the most complex research effort ever conducted for autism spectrum disorders (so called ASD).
The primary, far-reaching aim is to find pharmacological treatment for autism spectrum disorders (ASD). In order to achieve this, EU-AIMS has the following secondary objectives:
1.To identify cognitive and biological risk markers, which may help to:
- improve reliable diagnosis of ASD
- find potential pharmacological treatment targets
- stratify ASD patient groups
- predict clinical outcome of patients with ASD
2. Develop network of clinical sites which can be used to test new medications in the future.
3. Develop new methodologies for conducting ASD research.
4. To set new standards in research and clinical development.
All this will hopefully lead to a development of novel personalized treatments for those who suffer from ASD. For more detailed information, please see the video at the bottom of this page.
What assessments are added to those already conducted in RATSS?
At KIND in Stockholm, the EU-AIMS study is conducted as a continuation of the RATSS project. Therefore, some procedures and experiment are added on top of those already conducted during RATSS assessment: eye-tracking, certain bioassays (from blood and urine), as well as brain imaging including magnetic resonance spectroscopy (MRS) and PET (in some cases).
Time frame of the study
The study was launched in September 2014 and will end in June 2016. Till then we hope to gather data from 70 twin pairs. To conduct proper statistical analysis, we would like to include 50 twin pairs (30 monozygotic and 20 dizygotic twins) in which only one twin is affected with ASD (so called discordant twin pairs). Additionally, we hope to find 20 twin pairs in which none of the twins have ASD.