BGU Opens National Autism Research Center
March 18, 2019
The Times of Israel – Ben-Gurion University of the Negev and Soroka University Medical Center in Beer-Sheva announced the opening of the National Autism Research Center at the University.
The Center, funded partly by the Ministries of Health and Science and Technology and headed by BGU’s Prof. Ilan Dinstein, Dr. Gal Meiri, Dr. Idan Menashe, and Dr. Hava Golan, aims to be “Israel’s leading information and research center on the subject of autism and will be the coordinating body to assemble national studies on autism,” says Prof. Ilan Dinstein, from BGU’s Department of Psychology.
The new research center will be an upgrade of an existing regional autism center that was set up in 2015. It will provide access to research for scholars seeking new methods of treatment and will create shared national databases and distribute information to decision makers, healthcare professionals and the general public.
The ministries selected BGU to host the national center last summer.
“The decision to upgrade the Negev Autism Center from a regional to a national body is a gratifying vote of confidence in the research we’ve done here, and especially in our multidisciplinary approach to treating autism,” says Prof. Dinstein.
The existing regional center has already encouraged scientists and clinicians from a variety of fields including pediatrics, neurology, psychiatry, genetics, neuroscience, developmental psychology, molecular biology, and biomedical engineering to share their research, Prof. Dinstein explains.
“The new Center is an important benchmark for the study and treatment of the range of conditions that fall under the ‘autism’ rubric,” says BGU President Prof. Daniel Chamovitz. “It will serve academic researchers and healthcare professionals alike with a wealth of up-to-date research, detailed case studies, treatment methods, and more, making the National Center for the Study of Autism an invaluable warehouse of data and information.”