PROFNET EXPERT ALERTS: Health & Living

We've added the following to items posted previously at http://media.prnewswire.com/en/jsp/search.jsp?searchtype=full&option=headlines &criteriadisplay=show&resourceid=3702068

1. DR. CATHERINE KARNI, assistant professor of psychiatry at UT SOUTHWESTERN, and medical director of the Center for Pediatric Psychiatry at CHILDREN'S MEDICAL CENTER DALLAS: "Even diagnosing the disorder can be difficult. Autism spectrum disorders cover a wide span of conditions and symptoms, from severe mental retardation to mild social impairment. It wasn't until 1980 that autism became an official clinical diagnosis, separate from childhood schizophrenia or retardation. Early intervention is crucial for the treatment of autistic children." Karni also oversees the autism clinic at Children's Medical Center Dallas. News Contact: Erin Prather Stafford, [email protected] Phone: +1-214-648-3404 (4/3/08)

2. LYNDA GELLER, Ph.D., NYU CHILD STUDY CENTER: "Social skills have consistently been seen as a necessary precursor to positive social and emotional adjustment, yet there are few standards as to what constitutes good treatment in that area. Social-skills research is in its infancy, but there are still some guidelines, based on what evidence we do have, that can guide parents in assessing whether or not a given social-skills intervention may be beneficial for their child. Parents need to insist that schools and community providers present a curriculum of what will be accomplished and either include authentic opportunities for generalization of what is being learned or partner with parents to develop practice opportunities away from the office setting." Geller is one of the nation's foremost experts on Asperger Syndrome and Autism Spectrum Disorders. She is the clinical director of the Asperger Institute at the NYU CSC. News Contact: Ariela Friedman, [email protected] Phone: +1-212-404-3741 (4/11/08)

3. DR. SUZANNE ROBINSON, Ph.D., CAL STATE FULLERTON assistant professor of special education, is focusing the dissemination of research-based interventions for children with autism: "Researchers have done an amazing job discovering a number of extremely effective intervention techniques, particularly in the areas of language, social skills and challenging behaviors. Unfortunately, few people are truly capable of implementing these interventions successfully. For this reason, it is extremely important that we work to get research-based practices into the hands of those who need it most -- parents and teachers." To that end, Robinson is investigating video-based training programs that are effective and efficient so that parents, teachers, speech and language pathologists, and others can quickly learn the skills necessary to improve the lives of children with autism and their families. News Contact: Mimi Ko Cruz, [email protected] Phone: +1-714-278-7586 (4/11/08)

4. DR. AARON T. GOETZ, Ph.D., CAL STATE FULLERTON assistant professor of psychology, is conducting a series of experiments using stuffed animals -- some whose eyes will be manipulated to appear more cooperative, and others less cooperative: "Visible, white sclera provide a contrast with the pigmented iris, allowing others to follow our gaze. Our species is characterized by mutual social interactions, and this is easier when individuals can follow each other's eyes. Because those with autism are socially and communicatively impaired, they might not show a preference for the stuffed animals with cooperative eyes. Such a finding could be used to better design toys for children with autism." News Contact: Mimi Ko Cruz, [email protected] Phone: +1-714-278-7586 (4/11/08)

5. JEFFREY COHEN, author of "The Asperger Parent: How to Raise a Child with Asperger Syndrome and Maintain Your Sense of Humor" and "Guns A' Blazing": "Autism is an increasing problem across America today, and much is discussed about its causes and diagnosis. But there's another aspect that doesn't always get as much attention -- how it affects and forever changes the lives of those it touches. My son has Asperger Syndrome and is now preparing for his first year of college. The relationship between schools and parents of children with Autism Spectrum Disorders needn't be adversarial." News Contact: PJ Nunn, [email protected] Phone: +1-469-245-6202 (4/11/08)

6. DR. JACQUELINE BECKETT, psychologist and researcher at UT SOUTHWESTERN MEDICAL CENTER AND CHILDREN'S MEDICAL CENTER, treats autistic children in the autism clinic at Children's Medical Center Dallas. She completed a postdoctoral fellowship in clinical child psychology at the Center for Autism and Developmental Disabilities at Bradley Hospital, with a primary focus on assessment, treatment, and research with children with developmental disabilities and co-occurring psychiatric diagnoses. News Contact: Erin Prather Stafford, [email protected] Phone: +1-214-648- 3404 (4/3/08)

7. DR. GREG ALLEN is an assistant professor of psychiatry at UT SOUTHWESTERN MEDICAL CENTER. Allen's research explores the cerebellum and how dysfunction of this brain structure could relate to autism. Located at the base of the brain, the cerebellum had long been thought to be involved only in motor coordination. News Contact: Erin Prather Stafford, [email protected] Phone: +1-214-648-3404 (4/3/08)

8. DR. LISA MONTEGGIA, assistant professor of psychiatry at UT SOUTHWESTERN MEDICAL CENTER, is studying how a gene called MeCP2 mediates autistic-like behavior in mice. Mutations in MeCP2, which result in loss of function of the gene, occur in a developmental disorder called Rett syndrome, a human disease that shares many clinical features with autism. Mutations in MeCP2 genes also have been identified in people with autism. News Contact: Erin Prather Stafford, [email protected] Phone: +1-214-648-3404 (4/3/08)

9. DR. NANCY L. SEGAL, Ph.D., CAL STATE FULLERTON professor of psychology and renowned twins expert, is examining the cooperative eye hypothesis (which states that the sclera evolved to be more visible in humans than in any other species because it enhanced cooperation and communication through facilitating gaze direction and joint attention) in adults and children who have autism or sensory processing disorder. To this end, she is conducting experiments to improve the social and communicative impairments of those with autism. News Contact: Mimi Ko Cruz, [email protected] Phone: +1-714-278-7586 (4/11/08)

10. JUNE SHAPIRO, Ph.D., is a New York state-licensed clinical psychologist with extensive training in the field of psychology and specific expertise with autism. She was the president of the Independent Practice Division of New York State Psychological Association in 2002. Additionally, Shapiro has five children, aged 3-13, the eldest of whom is autistic (HFA, now PDD-NOS). News Contact: Sharon Brennan, [email protected] Phone: +1-212-628-8076 Web site: http://www.juneshapirophd.com (4/11/08)

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EXPERT ALERTS

1. BEAUTY: LIP AUGMENTATION. DR. JOSHUA FOX, founder of ADVANCED DERMATOLOGY and a spokesperson for the American Academy of Dermatology: "Lip augmentation and other procedures to improve the appearance of the lips are not just the province of celebrities anymore, with more than 8,700 surgical lip augmentation procedures performed last year alone. So, too, has the availability of countless injectable fillers and other methods for achieving the ideal lip look, leaving many patients wondering which process is right for them. Interest in lip augmentation has burgeoned in recent years, largely because the procedure creates a very dramatic and pleasing result quickly and safely. The variety of fillers and other methods available to plump and shape lips, as well as to reduce the appearance of lines, folds and wrinkles around the mouth, each have specific benefits and purposes that can be tailored to the needs of individual patients." News Contact: Melissa Chefec, [email protected] Phone: +1-203-968-6625 (4/11/08)

2. BEHAVIOR: YOUTH VIOLENCE AND PARENTAL RESPONSES. JIM BOUCHARD, martial arts instructor and professional speaker teaching personal responsibility and respect in personal and professional life: "A group of teens conspire to attack a peer. According to parents of the victim and the attackers, the Internet is to blame, MySpace is to blame, and the victim is to blame. One of these 'mother-of-the-year' candidates said her daughter, who knew about the attack, was too fearful to even tell an adult and try to prevent it. It's time to start using some dirty words like 'personal responsibility,' 'courage' and 'respect.' This incident is indicative of the lack of personal accountability in youth and parents. It's time to get back to basics." Bouchard is author of "Dynamic Components of Personal Power." Web site: http://www.JimBouchard.org (4/11/08)

3. DENTISTRY: COST-EFFICIENT TEETH-WHITENING TIPS. DR. MICHAEL KOSDON is a cosmetic dentist to the stars. In recognition of National Smile Month, he can discuss how people can save money on teeth-whitening investments: "Don't assume that expensive whitening procedures advertised by your local dentist garner the best results. Teeth-whitening strips deliver the best results and are much less costly. Industrial-strength strips are available through your dentist; don't waste your money on the whitening packages available over-the- counter at retail stores." News Contact: Cindy Rakowitz Phone: +1-310-386-3900 (4/11/08)

4. FAMILY ISSUES: REMEMBERING NON-TRADITIONAL MOMS ON MOTHER'S DAY. DR. SHARON LANGSHUR, co-founder of CAREPAGES.COM: "As Mother's Day approaches, it is important to remember the extraordinary group of devoted stand-ins -- grandparents, fathers, aunts, uncles, neighbors and others -- who have been called in unexpectedly to step up into the role of mother, nurturer and comforter for those facing health issues. It's important to realize that the role of 'mom' is sometimes played out by someone different than who we would traditionally think. At CarePages, we especially see how others are sometimes called in during difficult health issues to help and support taking on the maternal role. These surrogate moms carry others with the strength and caring they need until they can navigate solo again." News Contact: Peter Duckler, [email protected] Phone: +1-312-423-4930 (4/11/08)

5. HEALTH: COMPREHENSIVE PSA TEST. ZSUZSANNA VEGH-GOYARTS, Ph.D., head of flow cytometry and tumor markers AT ACUPATH LABORATORIES: "For decades, the 'gold standard' in testing for prostate cancer -- the most prevalent and deadly male cancer -- has been the total PSA screening. Yet, simply measuring the amount of PSA in the bloodstream has its drawbacks. Chief among them is the fact that elevated serum PSA can be caused by a variety of factors, leading to a significant percentage of false positive results. What's more, the benchmark level where clinicians consider further testing can shift based on prevailing research and professional experience. However, researchers have discovered a new, more comprehensive way to measure PSA in the bloodstream that can lead to more accurate diagnosis. A newer and more accurate test measures the ratio between 'free' PSA and total PSA in the bloodstream to determine how likely it is that a malignant prostate tumor is present." News Contact: Melissa Chefec, [email protected] Phone: +1-203-968-6625 (4/11/08)

6. HEALTH: SMART PRESCRIPTION USE. SUZY COHEN, R.Ph., "America's Most Trusted Pharmacist," author of the best-selling book "The 24-Hour Pharmacist" and the nationally syndicated column "Dear Pharmacist," and member of The American Pharmacists Association: "The American Pharmacists Association recently found that less than half of Americans can accurately list the prescriptions, OTC medications and supplements they put in their body, which means they don't know what potential harm they are doing to themselves. Consumers need to understand what ramifications are involved, along with understanding the issue of polypharmacy, drug interactions, hidden side effects of prescriptions such as nutrient depletion, and how pharmacist-patient communication can facilitate smart prescription and supplement use." News Contact: Shelley Rudd, [email protected] Phone: +1-323-988-4701 (4/11/08)

7. HOME: BRICK AND STONE COMBINATIONS CREATE CURB APPEAL IN RESIDENTIAL ARCHITECTURE. KATHLEEN JONILA, director of marketing and designer liaison for HANSON BRICK, North America's largest brick manufacturer: "The growing trend of using brick and stone together on residential facades can create lasting curb appeal for homes. Brick and stone play off each other's intricate color palettes, drawing out subtle nuances or emphasizing dominant themes, giving designs a distinctive look." News Contact: Dana Haydock, [email protected] Phone: +1-704-926-1301 (4/7/08)

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