Dr. Derrick MacFabe
Director and Principal Investigator of the Kilee-Patchell-Evans Autism Research Group, University of Western Ontario, London, Canada. Departments of Psychology (Neuroscience) & Psychiatry (Division of Developmental Disabilities).
Dr. MacFabe has a particular interest in the role of pre and post natal infectious processes in the etiology and behaviours of autism spectrum disorders. As a principal investigator at the Kilee Patchell-Evans Autism Research Group he is actively contributing to the development of novel animal models as well as the role of genetics, biochemistry and environment on the identification and possible treatments of autism spectrum disorders. In 2007, work on autism by his research group was listed among the top 50 scientific discoveries in Canada by the National Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC).
Dr. Tore Midtvedt
Professor Emeritus at Medical Department of Medical Microbial Ecology, Cell and Molecular Biology at Karolinska Institute in Stockholm, Sweden.
Tore Midtvedt is a specialist in Medical Microbiology and the Editor-in-Chief for the Journal Microbial Ecology in Health and Disease. He is a pioneering researcher in the development of microbial eco-systems, and their effect on health. Dr. Midtvedt has received several international awards, published more than 800 papers, articles, abstracts, and book chapters. In 2008 he presented his research on gut flora and the bacteria affecting behaviour for the Nobel symposium.
Dr. Martha Herbert
Dr. Martha Herbert is an Assistant Professor of Neurology at Harvard Medical School, and a Pediatric Neurologist at the Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston.
She is director of the TRANSCEND Research Program (Treatment Research and Neuroscience Evaluation of Neurodevelopmental Disorders).
Dr. Herbert recently received the first Cure Autism Now Innovator Award and is the Co-Chair of the Environmental Health Advisory Board of the Autism Society of America. Her research program includes studying what makes some autistic brains unusually large, how the parts of the brain are connected and coordinated with each other, and how we can develop a measure sensitive to changes in brain function that could result from treatment interventions.
Dr. Emma Allen-Vercoe
Department of Molecular & Cellular Biology, University of Guelph, Guelph, Canada.
Dr. Allen-Vercoe’s research focuses on the study of the normal human gut microflora, both in disease and in health. She focuses on 2 key diseases with connections to gut microflora: Inflammatory Bowel Disease (crohn’s and ulcerative colitis), and regressive autism. Allen-Vercoe’s research seeks to further characterize the microflora of autistic patients, and to determine whether certain bacterial products may somehow be involved in the etiology of autism. Her laboratory is collaborating with The Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard to contribute to the human microbiome project.
Dr Sidney Finegold
Dr. Finegold is a world-renowned authority on the biology and taxonomy of anaerobic bacteria and has contributed significantly to the knowledge of these disease-producing organisms. An award-winning researcher with a career spanning 60 years, Finegold’s reputation is global in scale.
Three recently discovered “bugs” have been named after him by research groups in the UK, Finland, and Japan. In 2009 he was honored with the Lifetime Achievement Award for his research work at the Veterans Administration in West Los Angeles.
Finegold’s current focuses are on the role of intestinal bacteria in autism; antibiotic-associated diarrhea and colitis; and role of intestinal bacteria in autoimmune disease. His discovery that clostridial spores exist in high levels in the guts of autistic children has led to further exploration of bacterial species in autism, and most recently to the discovery of a crucial bug in the disorder.
Staff Physician, Infectious Diseases Section, VA Greater Los Angeles Healthcare System
Emeritus Professor of Medicine, UCLA School of Medicine
Emeritus Professor of Microbiology, Immunology and Molecular Genetics, UCLA