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Welcome to Autistica

Autistica works to transform the lives of children and adults with autism through groundbreaking research. We fund scientists across the UK to understand autism better, improve diagnosis and develop the best ways to support people, so that everyone with autism can fulfil their potential.

The Autistica Research Programme for Ageing with Autism

We are delighted to announce the launch of the Autistica Research Programme for Ageing with Autism.

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The Half Million

Hidden half million

There are half a million adults with autism living in the UK today. Despite this there has been almost no research into how autism changes throughout adulthood, or understanding of the emotional, physical and mental health needs of adults with autism.

Autism has a huge economic impact because it lasts a lifetime and so many people are affected, often profoundly. Autism is estimated to cost the UK economy £32 billion per year, making it the single most costly medical condition. In contrast, it is currently estimated that just £4 million per year is spent on UK autism research by the government and charities combined. Only 7% of this is spent on research into adults, just 60p per adult per year.

The Autistica Research Centre for Ageing with Autism

Autistica is launching an ambitious new programme of research at Newcastle University to radically advance our understanding, diagnosis and support for this growing population.

Within five years, we will:

  1. Develop the best methods for diagnosing adults with autism.
  2. Use neuro-imaging, genetic profiling, and quality of life measures to understand how autism changes over time.
  3. Ensure that medical services are tailored to meet the unique needs of adults with autism.
  4. Develop models of best practise for social care and support.

You can help us get this vital work off the ground by donating to Autistica today. With your help, we can change the way that people grow up and grow old with autism.

You can give to Autistica in a number of ways:

  • By debit, credit card or Paypal - click here
  • Over the phone: 05601 183 601


To get involved in the research or find out more about the programme please call the Autistica team on 05601 183 601 or email friends@autistica.org.uk or sign up to our newsletter to learn more about our work.

Autistica works to transform the lives of children and adults with autism through groundbreaking research. We fund scientists across the UK to understand autism better, improve diagnosis and develop the best ways to support people, so that everyone with autism can fulfil their potential.

Our Research

Our current strategy focuses on three main research areas, which families have told us are most urgent for them:

  1. Early Diagnosis, Early Intervention: Our research aims to reduce the age of diagnosis and develop new early interventions, so that support can be given at the earliest possible time.
  2. Mental Health in Autism: 80% of people with autism experience additional mental health problems, including anxiety, depression and ADHD. Our research programme at the Institute of Psychiatry will develop new diagnostic methods for the most common mental health conditions in autism, and develop effective, and individualised autism-appropriate treatments.
  3. Ageing with Autism:  The majority of people with autism are adults, but to date there has been almost no research investment to ensure the best quality of life throughout adulthood and into old age. Our programme of research at Newcastle University will radically advance our understanding, diagnosis and support for this growing population.
Map of the UK showing location of projects funded by Autistica

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