Archived | Autism Speaks Scientific Review Panel | Circa 2008 #NotAnAutisticAlly




The Scientific Review Panel is responsible for reviewing the recommendations of the Scientific Advisory Board and making recommendations for funding of grants to the Board of Directors.


The following are members of the Scientific Review Panel:

Joseph Coyle, M.D.


Joseph Coyle, M.D. served as Chairman of the Consolidated Department of Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School from 1991 to 2001. He now holds the Eben S. Draper Chair of Psychiatry and Neuroscience at Harvard. He received his MD degree from Johns Hopkins School of Medicine in 1969. Following an internship in pediatrics, he spent three years at the National Institutes of Health as a research fellow in the laboratory of Nobel Prize winner Julius Axelrod, Ph.D. He returned to Hopkins in 1973 to complete his Psychiatric residency, in which he is board certified, and joined the faculty. In 1980 he was promoted to Professor of Neuroscience and Psychiatry; and in 1982 he assumed the Directorship of the Division of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, being named the Distinguished Service Professor in 1985. Dr. Coyle is a member of the Institute of Medicine of the National Academy of Sciences, a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, a fellow of the American Psychiatric Association, a fellow of the American College of Psychiatry and served on the National Advisory Mental Health Council for the National Institute of Mental Health. He is President-Elect of the American College of Neuropsychopharmacology and is a Past President (1991) of the Society for Neuroscience. He has been named the Editor-in-Chief of the Archives of General Psychiatry.

Geraldine Dawson, Ph.D.


Geraldine Dawson, Ph.D. served as Founding Director of the University of Washington Autism Center before joining Autism Speaks as Chief Science Officer in 2008. Dr. Dawson received a B.S. and Ph.D. in Developmental and Child Clinical Psychology from the University of Washington and was a postdoctoral fellow at the Neuropsychiatric Institute at UCLA. Dawson served on the faculty at University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill until 1985, when she returned to Seattle where she has been Professor of Psychology at UW. Dr. Dawson has had an active career as a scientist and clinician specializing in research on the causes and treatment of autism and the effects of experience on early brain development. She has received continuous NIH funding for her research on autism since 1980. She is on the Editorial Boards of Development and Psychopathology, Journal of Neurodevelopmental Disorders, and Autism Research, and serves on the NIH Interagency Autism Coordinating Committee Scientific Advisory Panel. Dr. Dawson has published numerous articles on autism spanning a wide range of topics including early detection, genetics, neuroimaging, and early intervention, and has edited or authored several books, including Autism: Nature, Diagnosis, and Treatment, Human Behavior, Learning, and the Developing Brain, and A Parent’s Guide to Asperger Syndrome and High-Functioning Autism, among others. Dawson was Director of the University of Washington’s NIH CPEA, STAART, and ACE Centers, and Founding Director of the UW Autism Center, which consists of an NIH-funded, multi-disciplinary autism research program and a treatment program that provides diagnostic and intervention services for children with autism and their families, professional training, and outreach.

Daniel Geschwind, M.D., Ph.D. 


Dr. Geschwind is a Professor of Neurology, Psychiatry and Genetics, and Director of the Neurogenetics Program and Center for Autism Research at UCLA. He received an A.B. in chemistry, with a minor in psychology at Dartmouth College in 1982; MD and Ph.D degrees at Yale University School of Medicine (1991). He came to UCLA to do his neurology residency (1991-1995), where he remained to develop the program in neurogenetics. He received the 2004 Derek Denny-Brown Neurological Scholar Award from the American Neurological Association and serves on several review and advisory boards including: 1999-2004 Chair, Steering Committee, Autism Genetic Resource Exchange; 2002- Editorial board, Lancet Neurology; 2003-present, 2004-Chair, Education Committee, Society for Neuroscience; 2004- Associate Editor, Neurobiology of Disease; March of Dimes scientific review committee 2004-present. Dr. Geschwind’s laboratory performs studies on the genetic basis of human cognitive specializations from the perspective of normal development and diseases, including autism and other neurodevelopmental disorders and focal neurodegenerative syndromes, such as Frontotemporal dementia and Alzheimer’s disease. The laboratory uses a wide variety of methods including molecular genetics, DNA microarrays, bio-informatics, cell culture and animal models. Working with other laboratories, his group is performing collaborative comparisons of human brain regions important in creative processes such as language with other species like the songbird, mouse, and non-human primates to help understand the unique, cognitive and creative abilities of the human.

Gary Goldstein, M.D. 


Dr. Goldstein is President and Chief Executive Officer, Kennedy Krieger Institute, one of the nation’s leading treatment centers for autism and other developmental disorders. He is Professor at Johns Hopkins University’s School of Medicine and Professor of Environmental Health Sciences at Johns Hopkins University’s School of Hygiene and Public Health. As one of the leading researchers of neurological functions and defects, Dr. Goldstein has helped gain international recognition for the Kennedy Krieger Institute through his studies of children with a wide range of disabilities, from rare genetic disorders to common learning problems. More than 13,000 children with disabilities visit the Kennedy Krieger Institute every year.

Craig Newschaffer, Ph.D.


Dr. Newschaffer is Professor and Chairman of the Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics at the Drexel University School of Public Health. Dr. Newschaffer has recently joined the Drexel faculty, coming from the Department of Epidemiology at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. At Johns Hopkins, Dr. Newschaffer founded and directed the Center for Autism and Developmental Disabilities Epidemiology, one of five federally funded centers of excellence in autism epidemiology. Major initiatives included the development of methods for monitoring autism spectrum disorders prevalence and participation in the largest population-based epidemiologic study of autism risk factors to date – the National CADDRE Study of Autism and Child Development. Dr. Newschaffer is also engaged in other projects focusing on how particular genes might interact with environment exposures to increase autism risk. His recently began collaboration with Peking University to explore approaches for conducting epidemiologic research on autism in China. Dr. Newschaffer is an Associate Editor of the American Journal of Epidemiology and a member of the editorial board of the journal, Developmental Epidemiology. Newschaffer is the father of a child with autism spectrum disorder. 



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