ace logoAutism Centers of Excellence (ACE) Program is a program by the National Institutes of Health that supports large-scale interdisciplinary studies on Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) with the goal of determining causes and potential treatments. Our ACE Network at UVA aims to answer a question that has remained a great mystery in Autism research and diagnosis: Why are four times as many boys diagnosed with ASD than girls?  


Update on our Network's Response to COVID-19 Progression and Resources for Families

Participants in our study are able to complete assessments and questionnaires online and virtually. Click here to learn more.

“Our goals include providing a much better understanding of the differences in how autism manifests in girls versus boys...we want to use the knowledge we gain to help us get the right treatment to the right individual at the right time.”
Kevin Pelphrey, Principal Investigator of the ACE Girls Neurogenetics Network



UVA Children’s is one of 20 leading autism care centers joining the national 


When the coronavirus pandemic first forced universities and labs to close, research teams raced to save their work and adjust to a socially distant world.


Meghan Puglia is an assistant professor of neurology.

Our ACE Network is Funded by

NIMHThe National Institute of Mental Health, Autism Centers of Excellence Program - R01MH100028 - Multimodal Developmental Neurogenetics of Females with ASD (PI: Kevin Pelphrey, PhD)


NIHNIH, "Parsing ASD Heterogeneity: Neuroendophenotypes of Social Attention and Sensory Responsivity" (R01MH117982, PIs: Dapretto, Mirella & Pelphrey, Kevin).


autism science

The Autism Science Foundation, "Exploring Oxytocin as a Mechanism for Sex-Related Differences in Brain Structure in Autism" (PI: Jack, Allison).


autism speaks

Autism Speaks Postdoctoral Fellowship award, “Transition to adulthood and factors impacting well-being in women with autism”    (POID 11808) (PI: McQuaid, Goldie).