Pfizer creates autism unit

October 25, 2009 9:52:36 AM PDT
Scientists at Pfizer Inc.'s Groton laboratories have launched an autism research unit to see if a cure or treatment can be found for the neurological disorder. Autism affects 1 in 100 children, according to a study released this month. Lee Grossman, president of the Autism Society of America, says Pfizer is the only company he's aware of that has a research unit devoted strictly to autism.

Currently, only the Johnson & Johnson's antipsychotic drug Risperidone has been cleared by the Food and Drug Administration for use in autistic children.

Autism is believed to be caused by a combination of environmental and genetic factors, and is often accompanied by language difficulties, behavioral problems, sleep interruptions, poor eye contact and low social skills.

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