Autism Care



“Future research needs to focus not only on the biological markers of ASD but also include data about functioning, participation, and environmental barriers and facilitators.”

Dr. Olaf Kraus de Camargo  //  Developmental Pediatrician


MacART is laying the foundation for creating a systematic way of linking scientific research on Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) at McMaster University to clinical practice at McMaster Children’s Hospital.

The physical proximity of McMaster Children’s Hospital, Hamilton Health Sciences, and McMaster University has a number of characteristics that provides the rare opportunity for collaborative research. Taking advantage of existing university and clinical infrastructure and cross-appointments for clinicians at the university, ASD experts from these organizations are coming together to integrate ASD research into clinical practice.

The focus of MacART members’ research is in the areas of basic science, clinical practice, clinical research, epidemiology and statistical modelling, knowledge translation and exchange, and social science research. By promoting the collaboration of stakeholders across disciplines, MacART is reducing barriers to implementing research in clinical practice, with the goal of advancing autism care through meaningful research.

Learn more about our research HERE.


MacART members are now supervising more than 50 research trainees at the undergraduate, graduate, and postgraduate levels, and are engaged in the mentoring of junior and intermediate faculty members.

In the future, we intend to establish research and clinical training programs for students in McMaster’s undergraduate medical, health sciences, and psychology programs, and for residents and fellows in Pediatrics and Psychiatry.

By training and mentoring emerging researchers and practitioners, we will help to solidify their understanding of and commitment to using basic science to inform their clinical practice, and to use their clinical experience to help formulate research questions. It is our belief that involving these learners in MacART educational activities will promote their use of practices that advance autism care through meaningful research.


“Our scientists are working collaboratively with local clinicians to generate the evidence needed to improve autism services. This symposium is a great example of McMaster’s community engagement efforts.”

Dr. Patrick Deane // President & Vice-Chancellor // McMaster University


The community engagement component of MacART strives to work with stakeholders and involve them as partners in every step of the research process.  By doing so, the questions that drive research begin to change. They become more meaningful because they address the real day-to-day challenges faced by children and their families, and the clinicians supporting them.

MacART aims to increase participation and involvement of members of the McMaster and Hamilton communities in the research process. With community members driving the research, new and relevant knowledge can be produced to bridge the research-to-practice gap in ASD and advance autism care through meaningful research.


“People whose lives are connected to the challenge of autism can share knowledge – from clinicians to educators to parents – and what an amazing opportunity that is. We have a real opportunity to translate challenges into research, and research into practice that will help families living with autism.”

Rob MacIsaac  //  President & CEO // Hamilton Health Sciences


Policies should be created using the best available evidence that make positive impacts on the lives of individuals with ASD, along with their families.

MacART’s founder, Stelios Georgiades, serves on both federal and provincial advisory committees about ASD treatment funding.  Along with the wide-ranging expertise of its many ASD experts, MacART is set to act as a highly credible source of evidence-based information to influence and inform public policy about the provision and funding of ASD diagnosis, treatment, and family supports.

MacART will continue to find ways to collaborate with policymakers to both learn more about the policymaking process, and to contribute our expertise and knowledge to inform policymaking, in order to advance autism care through meaningful research.

Autism: Sex & Gender in Development, by Dr. Meng-Chuan Lai

"Autism: Sex & Gender in Development" by Dr. Meng-Chuan Lai, June 28 2017 at Offord

On Wednesday June 28th, 2017, MacART was pleased to host 2 visiting autism researchers for an informative Lunch & Learn on sex and gender in development. Drs. Will Mandy and Meng-Chuan Lai presented to a packed house on a framework to understand the modulating roles of sex and gender in the presentation and emergence of autism, and the clinical implications. 

Longitudinal Research in Autism: Introducing the Concept of “Chronogeneity”

Longitudinal Research in Autism: Introducing the Concept of “Chronogeneity” | Stelios Georgiades

On April 22, 2017, York University hosted its second TEDxYorkUSalon, this year focusing on innovations for people with autism, both within their community and in research.  The event featured 13 researchers from universities in the Greater Toronto and Hamilton area presenting 3 minute 'lightning talks'. This included MacART co-director Dr. Stelios Georgiades, presenting on the concept of 'chronogeneity' - exploring developmental change over time.  

Other MacART presenters included Jane FosterBriano Di Rezze, and Diana Parvinchi. Videos of all the speakers from the day's event can be found HERE

High School Health Research Bursary Award Student - 2016

Olivia Mendoza - 2016 Bursary

After a great experience with our HHS High School Health Research Bursary student in 2015, we had another student placed with us in 2016 for a 7-week summer internship where youth have the opportunity to be exposed to a research environment.  

Olivia Mendoza was a 2016 reward recipient who worked with Dr. Stelios Georgiades.  She was asked to examine attrition rates in the team's studies, exploring why some families might have more difficulty staying in research studies. Watch this great video to learn more about Olivia and her work with us! 

DMCN Author Podcast - Briano di Rezze and Peter Rosenbaum

DMCN Author Podcast - Briano di Rezze and Peter Rosenbaum (August 2016)

In a paper published in Developmental Medicine and Child Neurology (DMCN), lead author Dr. Briano Di Rezze and co-autor Dr. Peter Rosenbaum described a new classification system for social communication abilities in children with ASD. In this podcast video made by DMCN, they discuss the process involved in developing this tool, which can be freely accessed HERE.

High School Health Research Bursary Award Student - 2015

Sandra Lee - 2015 Bursary

Our partners at Hamilton Health Sciences run a highly succesful program that links HHS researchers with some of Ontario's top science students for a work placement.  The program is designed to expose high-school students to a career in health research by providing hands-on experience in a research environment.  Through a 7-week summer internship, youth become part of a research team and have the opportunity to conduct basic or clinical research activities within one of Hamilton’s internationally renowned research programs at Hamilton Health Sciences, McMaster University and St. Joseph’s Healthcare Hamilton.  Upon completion of their internship, students have a better understanding of the research environment and education requirements, gain valuable research skills and techniques, as well as establish networking relationships they will carry forward throughout their academic studies.

Sandra Lee was a 2015 award recipient who worked with Dr. Terry Bennett on the Pathways in ASD study - a longitudinal study following up on children diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder.  Sandra helped with knowledge translation, translating research into clear language, and providing her experience as a young person.  Here is a brief video about her experience with us!