A.J. Drexel Autism Institute Events
2019 Autism & Public Health Lecture
The Epidemiology of Autism: Investigating Perinatal Risk Factors
The signature event of the Autism Institute is the annual Autism & Public Health Lecture, a speaker series that brings top researchers to Philadelphia to talk about the latest in public health research on autism. Lectures are always open to the wider community and offer researchers the opportunity to engage with a general audience on the implications of their research.
Dr. Lisa Croen
Director, Autism Research Program
Kaiser Permanente Northern California
Wednesday, March 27, 2019, 9 am - 11 am
Continental Breakfast provided 8:30 am – 9:00 AM
Behrakis Grand Hall, Drexel University
3210 Chestnut Street
Download the flyer for more details
Although the initial manifestations of autism spectrum disorders
typically do not appear until several months or years after a child is
born, the results of research studies conducted over the past 50 years
provide overwhelming evidence that factors operating around the time
of pregnancy and birth are at play. Epidemiologic studies have played
a crucial role in the identification of perinatal risk factors for autism,
and in directing basic science studies focused on elucidating
underlying biologic mechanisms. In this talk, the process by which
epidemiologists go about studying perinatal risk factors for autism
spectrum disorders will be described. Findings from recent studies
investigating environmental exposures, genetic factors, and their
interplay, will illustrate different approaches and study designs.
Studies utilizing biospecimens collected from expectant mothers and
their newborns and investigating the role of immune system function
in autism will be highlighted.
Lisa Croen, PhD, is a senior research scientist at the Division of Research (DOR), Kaiser Permanente Northern California (KPNC), and the director of the Kaiser Permanente Autism Research Program. Her research interests include the epidemiology of autism and other neurodevelopmental disorders, environmental exposures and gene/environment interaction, and the delivery of health services to individuals with ASD across the life span. Currently, Dr. Croen is the Co-Principal investigator at Kaiser Permanente of the NIH-funded ECHO study, principal investigator of several NIH-funded studies including Early Markers for Autism study (EMA) and Immune and Metabolic markers during Pregnancy and Child Neurodevelopment (IMPaCT), and site principal investigator on several large federally funded autism studies including the Study to Explore Early Development (SEED), the Early Autism Risk Longitudinal Investigation (EARLI), the Autism Centers of Excellence ACTION Network, and the ECHO ASD-ER study. In collaboration with clinical colleagues, she is conducting mixed methods studies to evaluate autism treatments at KPNC, the transition from pediatric to adult healthcare among KPNC patients with autism, barriers and facilitators of healthcare service use among Latino families affected by autism, and the health status and healthcare utilization of adults with autism. Dr. Croen received her master's degree in public health and her doctorate in epidemiology, both from the University of California, Berkeley.