The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) held its annual national convention and exhibition (NCE) in Boston on Oct. 11-14, 2008. As the premiere gathering for AAP members from around the country, the NCE offers a chance for them to learn about latest advances in pediatric medicine and to network and share experiences and insights.
This year's conference was attended by a record 11,000 physicians, who flocked to presentations on topics ranging from health disparities among minorities to autism, including "Is it Autism?" a session focusing on autism diagnosis led by Autism Speaks Autism Treatment Network member Dr. Susan Hyman of the University of Rochester. Autism Speaks had an information booth at the conference, and similar to last year, saw non-stop traffic and an outpouring of interest from conference attendees.
Autism Speaks Chief Science Officer Dr. Geri Dawson and VP of Scientific Affairs Dr. Andy Shih were also at the conference. Dr. Dawson participated in a session where she discussed the clinical implications of a gene-based screening tool that helps identify siblings of children with autism who are at higher risk of developing autism. Both Dr. Dawson and Dr. Shih met with the AAP executive committee to explore ways for the two organizations to work more closely together to educate and inform AAP members about autism and to enhance the care of children and families touched by autism.