Explore This Center

Overview

The Lurie Center for Autism is an integrated and multidisciplinary clinical, research, training and advocacy program dedicated to treating individuals with autism spectrum disorder and other developmental disorders. Our mission is to treat individuals and support their families across the lifespan. Our Lexington location is the primary clinical care and clinical research site. The Lurie Center for Autism is born out of a philosophy that people with developmental disabilities deserve to be viewed as individuals, each with personal patterns of talents and challenges. We strongly believe that each individual deserves the opportunity for access to the quantity and quality of services needed to reach his or her full potential, regardless of economic, social or ethnic background.

The Lurie Center clinical model combines evaluation and treatment by physicians, psychologists, and nurse practitioners in collaboration with other professionals involved in the individual’s care, including educational consultants, behavioral consultants, and our on-site Spaulding partners. Our unique approach is applied not only to diagnosis but also to identifying the most appropriate interventions and therapies for each patient’s special needs. The multidisciplinary model further offers the opportunity for the care team to more effectively communicate and learn from each other to improve complex clinical care.

The Lurie Center evaluates children aged 6 and younger for an initial question of autism. We specialize in caring for individuals with autism spectrum disorder and complex profiles. The Lurie Center is committed to providing support for individuals with autism and the following conditions across the lifespan.   


Collaborative Partners Based in our Lexington Location Include:

Meet the Team

Lurie Center for Autism Director

Lurie Center for Autism Medical Director

Lurie Center for Autism Clinical Director, Non-Physician Services

Lurie Center for Autism Scientific Director

Our Providers and Specialists

Our Providers

Primary Care Services

Nurse Practitioner
Nurses

Family Support Clinicians

Senior Behavioral Consultant

Education Specialist

MGH Patient Navigator for Autism

Our on-site Occupational Therapy, Physical Therapy, and Speech-Language Therapy Services are provided by rehabilitation specialists from the Spaulding Outpatient Center for Children Lexington.

Patient Resources

View the full collection of patient resources from the Lurie Center for Autism

Workshops and Events

Coffee Convo Presentation Series (view schedule) 

The Lurie Center for Autism is committed to providing ongoing evidence-based learning and training opportunities for patients, families, and professionals. Our popular Coffee Convo presentation series runs monthly throughout the year. Coffee Convo events are presented virtually on Wednesday evenings from 6:30pm – 7:30pm. All events are free and open to the public. Registration opens four weeks prior to each event. To receive registration email reminders, subscribe here.

Wednesday, March 13th -Register Online
"Combatting Unemployment in Autistic Adults"
Presenters:  Elise Wulff, MEd, and Brett Mulder, PsyD

The Lurie Center for Autism invites you to join Elise Wulff, MEd, and Brett Mulder, PsyD for a presentation and discussion around how individuals, professionals, and caregivers can work to combat unemployment for autistic adults. Employment rates for adults on the autism spectrum are some of the lowest of all disability categories. Business initiatives that support neurodiversity in the workplace have drawn focus to this concern and led to some promising shifts in recruitment, hiring, and retention practices. This presentation will discuss the employment landscape specific to individuals on the autism spectrum and provide concrete recommendations for how individuals, parents/caregivers, and providers can further support pre-vocation and employment goals.


Many of our Coffee Convo presentations have been recorded. Visit our YouTube Channel to watch our Coffee Convo playlists.


Parent and Caregiver Workshops (view schedule)

The Lurie Center for Autism invites parents, guardians and families to participate in our Parent and Caregiver Workshops. All workshops are held virtually and open to the public. Registration is Required. Reserve your spot by contacting us at LurieCenter@partners.org or 781-860-1700. Virtual meeting links will be emailed to all confirmed registrants prior to event day. Below is the list of current workshops being offered. Workshop descriptions and scheduling details are available here.
  • Understanding Your Child’s New Autism Diagnosis and Next Steps
  • Autism 101 - 6-Session Workshop Series for Parents of Newly Diagnosed Children
  • Supporting Early Language Development with Pivotal Response Treatment (PRT)
  • South Asian Autism Group and Resources (SAAGAR)
  • Educational Options for Your Preschool Age Child With ASD
  • Navigating the IEP for Your Child with ASD
  • Behavior Basics - A 3-Part Series
  • Safety at Home and in the Community
  • De-Escalating Challenging Behaviors: A CPI Training for Parents and Caregivers
  • De-Escalating Challenging Behaviors: A Virtual CPI Training for Parents and Caregivers
  • Parent CPI Refresher Class: Physical De-Escalation Skills
  • Parent CPI Refresher Class: Verbal De-Escalation Skills
  • Fear of Needles
  • Pill Swallowing
  • Parent Desensitization Training Series
  • Transition to Adult Services
  • Guardianship 101
  • Guardianship 102
  • Guardianship 103
  • Guardianship 104

Evaluation & Services

For Children and Adolescents

For Adults

Research

Central to the mission of the Lurie Center for Autism is to advance knowledge of the causes of and treatments for autism spectrum disorder and other developmental disorders and rapidly translate these discoveries into exceptional clinical care over a lifetime. Learn more about Research at the Lurie Center for Autism.


News

See below for important news articles and published material. 


"Prescription Stimulant Use During Pregnancy and Risk of Neurodevelopmental Disorders in Children"
- JAMA Psychiatry. January 24, 2024
Chris McDougle, MD

"Buspirone for the treatment of anxiety in Williams syndrome: a retrospective chart review study", Expert Opinion on Pharmacotherapy. January 22, 2024.
Eva Shin, Danielle Renzi, Camila Canales, Caitlin Ravichandran, Christopher McDougle & Robyn Thom. 

"Improving Care for Autistic Adults", Harvard Medical School - Trends in Medicine, November 2023

Congratulations to Ann Neumeyer, MD for her recently published article, "Optimizing Care for Autistic Patients in Healthcare Settings: A Scoping Review and Call To Action.”, Academic Pediatrics, November 2023

Congratulations to Ann Neumeyer, MD and Hannah Brooks for their recently published article, "Co-occurrence and inheritance of two typically sporadic neurogenetic disordersin Annals of the Child Neurology Society, December 2023

"It's a very human condition: Researchers seek answers to mystery of autism, in blood", The Boston Globe, November 22, 2023

Congratulations to Danielle Renzi as the lead author of Body mass index variation in adults with Williams syndrome:  associations with predicted dietary intake and food behaviors in Food and Nutrition Research.

Congratulations to Robyn Thom, MD, Caitlin Ravichandran, PhD, and Christopher McDougle, MD for their newly published article Clozapine for treatment refractory catatonia in individual with ASD:  a retrospective chart review study in the Expert Review of Clinical Pharmacology (online), August 2023.

Congratulations to Eva Shin, Caitlin Ravichandran, PhD, Danielle Renzi, Chris McDougle, MD, and Robyn Thom, MD. for their newly published article Diversity of Participants in Williams Syndrome Intervention Studies in the Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, August 2023.

Congratulations to Robyn Thom, MD, Camila Canales, Chris McDougle, MD, Jacob Hooker, PhD, Yachin Chen, PhD, Nicole Zurcher, PhD, for their article Neuroimaging Research in Williams syndrome:  Beginning to bridge the gap with clinical care  published in Neuroscience and Neuroscience and Biobehavior Reviews, August 2023.

Congratulations to Chris McDougle, MD and Chris Keary, MD, for their new article published in the online journal Expert Review of Neurotherapeutics: Current and emerging treatment options for Angelman syndrome, August 2023

Congratulations to Chris Keary, MD for his new article published in European Journal of Paediatric Neurology: Gaboxadol in angelman syndrome: A double-blind, parallel-group, randomized placebo-controlled phase 3 study, August 2023.

"Lurie Center Hopes to Increase Biobank Representation of Individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorder", Bench Press - MassGeneral Research Institute, April 2023

A U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report found one in 36 children received an autism spectrum disorder (ASD) diagnosis in 2020 compared to a rate of one in 44 in 2018.  Watch the video to hear from Dr. Chris Keary, a psychiatrist with the Lurie Center for Autism at Mass General for Children in Boston, Massachusetts. WCVB 5 News, Boston

Congratulations to Ann M. Neumeyer, MD, medical director of the MGH Lurie Center for Autism, who was recently appointed the incumbent of the MGH Lurie Family Endowed Chair in AutismDr. Neumeyer’s work focuses on the diagnosis and treatment of children with autism and of children with neurodevelopmental disabilities. She has a strong interest in investigations of metabolic and bone development, drug trials and medical issues in children with autism and advocating for children with autism in the Massachusetts State House.

Congratulations to Jacob Hooker, PhD, Scientific Director at the Lurie Center for Autism, for being selected as a national finalist in chemistry for the 2022 Blavatnik National Awards for Young Scientists.

Congratulations to Chris McDougle, Robyn Thom, Caitlin Ravichandran, Michelle Palumbo, Chris Keary, and Jennifer Mullett for their new article published online in Neuropsychopharmacology: A randomized double-blind, placebo-controlled pilot trial of mirtazapine for anxiety in children and adolescents with ASD, March 2022

Congratulations to Lurie Center researchers Robyn Thom, Caitlin Ravichandran, Jennifer Mullett, and Christopher McDougle for their article Repetitive Thoughts and Repetitive Behaviors in Williams Syndrome recently published in the Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, February 2022.

Congratulations to Chris Keary, Ron Thibert, and Nicole Simon for their newly published article, A multidisciplinary approach and consensus statement to establish standards of care for Angelman syndrome, in Molecular Genetics & Genomic Medicine, February 2022.

"Considerations for the identification of autism spectrum disorder in children with vision or hearing impairment: A critical review of the literature and recommendations for practice", The Clinical Neuropsychologist, December 2021
Natasha N. Ludwig, Dasal Tenzin Jashar, Kelly Sheperd, Jill L. Pineda, Dani Previ, Jennifer Reesman, Calliope Holingue and Gwendolyn J. Gerner

Congratulations to Evan Bordt, PhD, of the MGH Lurie Center for Autism, for recently being awarded a grant from the Autism Research Institute (ARI).
The ARI supports research on the underlying causes of and treatments for autism spectrum disorder.

Congratulations to Robyn Thom, MD, child and adolescent psychiatrist at the MGH Lurie Center for Autism, for being awarded a Jerome Lejeune Foundation grant.
The Jerome Lejeune Foundation supports research on childhood genetic disorders associated with intellectual disability. Thom’s study will assess the pharmacologic treatment of depression in adults with Down syndrome.

Congratulations to Marcy Kingsbury for her new article published in TISSUE BARRIERS: The Zonulin-transgenic mouse displays behavioral alterations ameliorated via depletion of the gut microbiota, November 2021

Primary Care Services Now Offered at the Lurie Center - James Bath, MD Special Announcement , November 2021

New Scientific Director Aims to Broaden Autism Research - Mass General Giving, November, 2021


Congratulations to Robyn Thom, Chris Keary, and Chris McDougle for their new article:  "Functional Neurological Symptom Disorder in Williams Syndrome: Case Series and Review of Relevant Literature" in the Journal of the Academy of Consultation-liaison Psychiatry.

"Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors for the Treatment of Depression in Adults with Down Syndrome:  A Preliminary Retrospective Chart Review Study", brain sciences, September 2021
Robyn Thom, MD, Michelle Palumbo, MD, Chris McDougle, MD, and Caitlin Ravichandran, MD

Congratulations to Robyn Thom, MD and Christopher McDougle, MD for two new publications: "Evaluation and Treatment of New-Onset Psychotic Symptoms in a Patient with ASD and Multiple Autoimmune Disorders", and "Challenges and Strategies to Mitigate Problematic Social Media Use in Psychiatric Disorders".

Congratulations to Robyn Thom, MD, child and adolescent psychiatrist at the MGH Lurie Center for Autism, for receiving an Early Investigator Award from the Williams Syndrome Association.
This award provides support for early investigators performing research aimed at improving the health and well-being across the lifespan of individuals with Williams syndrome.

Congratulations to Robyn Thom, MD, child and adolescent psychiatrist at the MGH Lurie Center for Autism, for receiving the Louis V. Gerstner III Research Scholar Award from the MGH Department of Psychiatry.
This competitive grant award is geared to newly or recently trained MDs or PhDs who seek to pursue careers as clinician-researchers or researchers in the areas of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and/or ADHD plus related disorders. 

"Buspirone for the treatment of generalized anxiety disorder in Down syndrome: Three cases"
Journal of Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrics, May 2021
Yamini Howe, Robyn Thom, Chris McDougle and Michelle Palumbo

Congratulations to Emily Anderberg for the publication of Co‑occurring Down Syndrome and Autism Spectrum Disorder: Cognitive, Adaptive, and Behavioral Characteristics in the Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, April 2021

Congratulations to Marcy Kingsbury, PhD, for being one of eight junior faculty recipients of the 2021 Claflin Distinguished Scholar Awards! These awards support the career advancement and research productivity of women in science at MGH.

"
Development of an adapted Clinical Global Impression scale for use in Angelman syndrome", January 4, 2021, Journal of Neurodevelopmental Disorders
Christopher Keary, MD, Alexander Kolevzon, Pamela Ventola, Gali Heimer, Jeffrey L Neul, Mathews Adera, Judith Jaeger

Videos

The Lurie Center for Autism is committed to providing educational and training resources for patients, families, and professionals. Visit our YouTube Channel to scroll through our library of provider videos and recorded presentations. New videos are added monthly. For specifc playlists, see below.


Careers

The Lurie Center for Autism is currently seeking applicants for the following open positions: 

Summer 2024 Undergraduate Research Internships - Application period is closed
Neurodevelopmental Faculty Scientist - Lurie Center for Autism
Clinical Psychiatrist - Lurie Center for Autism
Senior Clinical Research Coordinator
Clinical Research Coordinator II
Grant Administrator - Lurie Center for Autism

Predoctoral Practicum in Clinical Neuropsychology 
Postdoctoral Fellowship in Neurodevelopmental Disabilities and Assessment 
Postdoctoral Fellowship in Maternal Immune Activation and the Impact on Neurodevelopment
Postdoctoral Fellowship in Communication Analysis, Modeling and Intervention in ASD 
MGH Fellowship Program in Autism Spectrum Disorder 


Request an appointment    Reach us through Patient Gateway