QBI will form part of a Cooperative Research Centre (CRC) that has received $31 million from the Federal Government for work assisting Australians Living with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD).

The CRC will be based at The University of Queensland and has three main aims to assist individuals living with ASD. These include ensuring that: (a) they have a definitive diagnosis at an early age that can be coupled with a targeted early intervention strategy; (b) they will be educated in an appropriate environment by skilled professionals; and (c) they will be given the best chance to find a meaningful and fulfilling place in society through higher education, employment and better opportunities for long-term social relationships.

QBI’s Associate Professor Charles Claudianos and Dr Alex Cristino join scientists from 12 different research groups and their work is expected to benefit the lives of more than 1 million Australians.

“Better diagnostic tools, allowing affected children to be identified during the early years of life will allow for prompt intervention when neural plasticity is greatest, promoting better cognitive and psychosocial outcomes for the individual, and associated benefits for family members and public health spending,” says Associate Professor Claudianos.

In establishing Australia’s (and the world’s) first national, cooperative research effort directed towards ASD, comes the implementation of a highly innovative “whole-of-life” research portfolio, and the assembly of some of the finest and most respected scientists in their relevant fields.