Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD)

Manchester is a leading UK centre for autism intervention research at all developmental ages. 

Professor Jonathan Green leads the MRC pre-school autism communication trial (PACT), currently the largest intervention trial internationally in this area. We are undertaking basic research into early parent/child communication in infants at high risk of autism and pre-schoolers with autism.

In middle childhood, Professor Green has led basic research into co-morbidity in autistic spectrum disorders and collaborates in studies of communication intervention in middle childhood. We are working to develop new interventions in infancy and middle childhood and studying case management approaches to the treatment of developmental disorders.

Professor Green works in an MRC methodology group to develop new trial designs to test complex interventions in developmental disorder. He also collaborates on the International Molecular Genetic Study of Autism Consortium. 

Research issues

  • Can we develop the design of clinical trials in child mental health so (especially using process measures) so as to maximise their relevance and external validity?
  • Can we develop effective treatment interventions for autistic spectrum disorders?
  • Can we use techniques from ongoing treatment trials (along with parallel developmental studies) to understand social impairments underlying other disorders in child mental health?       

Our studies

  • iBASIS
    iBasis is an innovative study to assess the impact and feasibility of an infancy intervention in siblings of children already diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder.
  • PACT
    The Pre-school Autism Communication Trial (PACT) was a large-scale multi-site randomised controlled trial that ran between 2006 and 2010. It tested a parent-mediated communication-based intervention for young children with autism. The trial was a major scientific success and constitutes one of the largest autism intervention studies completed internationally.
  • PACT 7-11 Follow Up
    PACT 7-11 is a follow-up study of all the families who were involved in the PACT trial. This is an invaluable opportunity to study longitudinal development in autism and to understand more about what factors in the pre-school years affect how children develop into middle childhood.
  • PACT-G
    PACT-G is a current study to assess whether the PACT-G therapy can help children to generalise any improvements in social communication across a range of settings.  
  • PASS
  • The Parent-mediated intervention for Autism Spectrum Disorders in South Asia (PASS) study is an exciting collaborative project between research teams in Goa (India), Rawalpindi (Pakistan), Manchester and Liverpool. It is an ongoing two year project funded by the Autism Speaks Global Autism Public Health initiative and involves culturally adapting and assessing the feasibility, acceptability and effectiveness of the PACT intervention in South Asian local settings.
    SimvAstatin in Neurofibromatosis Type 1-Autism (SANTA) is a research study looking at the use of the drug Simvastatin in children with NF1 and Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD). 
  • New Life - website coming soon.
  • EDEN - website coming soon.