ALISO VIEJO, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Ambry Genetics Corporation (Ambry) is calling on psychiatrists, psychologists and behavioral specialists to encourage their patients with autism, along with their family members, to sign up for a new study conducted through Ambry’s data sharing program, AmbryShare. With this program, Ambry is taking a step towards discovering possible associations between genes and autism, so clinicians can provide their patients with targeted treatments and therapies much earlier in life.
“What’s unique about AmbryShare’s approach is that we collect genetic information from clinics and families from all over the world to answer questions that can’t be answered with just a handful of patients,” said Brigette Tippin Davis, PhD, Ambry’s Director of Emerging Genetic Medicine. “The great thing about Ambry partnerships is that we are building connections between research institutions and empowering them to develop new approaches to treating patients with autism based on genetic profiles.”
So far, dozens of behavioral clinics and other medical offices have contributed to AmbryShare studies by encouraging participation from their patients. Ambry strives to enroll more than 10,000 patients from clinics nationally and internationally.
“Genetic testing would allow us to personalize treatment from a genetic profile and optimize it together with our rich behavioral data,” said Dennis Dixon, PhD, Chief Strategy Officer at Center for Autism and Related Disorders (CARD). “I really value working with Ambry, knowing this data will have an impact on treatment for our patients and then will still be available for other researchers to access to answer additional research questions. As we each put more samples in, it increases the overall likelihood that we’re going to find something that really makes a difference.”
One in 64 children in the United States is diagnosed with an autism spectrum disorder (ASD), which can impact social interaction, communication and behavior. Genetic testing can help identify an underlying cause in up to 40% of autism spectrum disorders. Some genetic causes include chromosome microdeletions/microduplications, fragile X syndrome, Angelman syndrome, and tuberous sclerosis. New gene discovery can allow clinicians to determine their patient’s course of treatment and the gene-disease relationship associated with their individual case of autism. Through the recruitment of a massive cohort, more data will be collected to discover more genes, develop medical management plans and enact preventive strategies.
“The scientists need the data to be out there,” said Charles Dunlop, Ambry’s President and Chairman. “We need to know what these diseases are actually doing, what causes them, what gene mutations are associated with them so we can move forward as an industry and move onto the next phase where there is no disease of any kind. A phase where pharmaceutical researchers know exactly what to do, or exactly what problems they’re trying to solve at a minutiae level—that’s when the cures come.”
In 2016, Mayo Clinic and University of Utah collaborated with Ambry on a new research study of more than 60,000 patients to help refine breast cancer risk estimates from predisposition genes that are either previously lacking data or have limited data. The study, “Breast cancer risks associated with mutations in cancer predisposition genes identified by clinical genetic testing of 60,000 breast cancer patients” represented the largest genetic study of women with hereditary breast cancer. The large amount of data was able to provide researchers with new information about genes that contributed to breast cancer risk. Ambry wants to provide researchers with the same capabilities for autism.
Since 2001, Ambry has been dedicated to scientific research to help empower the scientific community and refine clinician management guidelines so patients may receive tailored medical management. AmbryShare’s initial launch in 2016 provided scientific researchers and clinicians with the largest open, de-identified database of hereditary breast and ovarian cancer cohorts with the goal of achieving a greater understanding of human disease.
For more information and to enroll in the AmbryShare autism study, visit the AmbryShare portal here.
ABOUT AMBRY GENETICS®
Ambry Genetics is both College of American Pathologists (CAP)-accredited and Clinical Laboratory Improvement Amendments (CLIA)-certified. Ambry leads in clinical genetic diagnostics and genetics software solutions, combining both to offer the most comprehensive testing menu in the industry. Ambry has established a reputation for sharing data while safeguarding patient privacy, unparalleled service, and responsibly applying new technologies to the clinical molecular diagnostics market. For more information about Ambry Genetics, visit www.ambrygen.com.
About the Center for Autism and Related Disorders (CARD)
CARD treats individuals of all ages who are diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) at treatment centers around the globe. CARD was founded in 1990 by leading autism expert and clinical psychologist Doreen Granpeesheh, PhD, BCBA-D. CARD treats individuals with ASD using the principles of applied behavior analysis (ABA), which is empirically proven to be the most effective method for treating individuals with ASD and recommended by the American Academy of Pediatrics and the US Surgeon General. CARD employs a dedicated team of over 3,000 individuals across the nation and internationally.
For more information, visit www.centerforautism.com or call (855) 345-2273.