Clarkson study on autism exceeds funding goal by 14 percent thanks to website donations
Friday, December 21, 2012 - 5:19 pm

POTSDAM -- A Clarkson University study on autism has reached – and exceeded – its $5,500 funding goal through a website set up to receive donations.

Several Clarkson students and professors are studying the proteins found in the blood and saliva of children with autism. The group, led by professors Alisa G. Woods and Costel C. Darie, hopes to develop a diagnostic test for autism by identifying the protein biomarkers for the disease. Several students, from both graduate and undergraduate programs, are also involved in the project.

Autism currently has no diagnostic test, and children are diagnosed based on behavioral symptoms alone. Early diagnosis is critical, as treatment for autism is more effective if begun at an early age.

In order to raise money for specialized software to assist in analyzing lab results, called Scaffold, the group went on the web to request donations, with a stated goal to raise $5,500.

The donation website, which can be viewed here, not only met the $5,500 mark but exceeded it by 14%, reaching $6,225.

The Scaffold software will be used in the autism study, as well as other studies, and could potentially assist in obtaining grants to continue the group’s research. Extra funds will be used to purchase supplies and equipment for the lab, which will be used in the autism project. The group will continue to accept donations toward more research.