Schizophrenia/Catatonia in Individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorder

Friday, April 19, 2019 - 12:00pm to 2:00pm
Event Description: 


2018-2019 START National Online Training Series

Presentation Title: Schizophrenia/Catatonia in Individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorder

Presenter: Jennifer McLaren, MD, Assistant Professor of Psychiatry, Dartmouth Institute at the Geisel School of Medicine at Dartmouth


Dr. McLaren will discuss the history of autism, schizophrenia and catatonia. She will review the DSM-5 criteria, prevalence of these disorders, risk factors and overlapping features of schizophrenia and autism. She will discuss the presentation of schizophrenia and autism and briefly review treatment. Dr. McLaren will review how catatonia presents in individuals with autism and the treatment. 

Learning Objectives:

  • Discuss history of autism, schizophrenia and catatonia
  • Review DSM-5 criteria, epidemiology, risk factors, and overlapping features of autism and schizophrenia. 
  • Discuss the presentation of schizophrenia in autism
  • Review DSM-5 criteria, presentation and treatment of catatonia in individuals with autism

About the Presenter:

Jennifer McLaren, M.D. is an Assistant Professor of Psychiatry and The Dartmouth Institute at the Geisel School of Medicine at Dartmouth. Dr. McLaren specializes in child and adolescent psychiatry, particularly in autism spectrum disorders and developmental disabilities.

Improving the quality of life for people with autism spectrum disorders and developmental disabilities has been the defining purpose of Dr. McLaren’s career.   Dr. McLaren’s work has focused on clinical program development, education, health policy, and research.  Dr. McLaren oversees the Behavioral and Neurodevelopmental Services (BANDS) at Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center.  BANDS is a multidisciplinary group of providers at Dartmouth-Hitchcock who work with children, adolescents, and young adults and their families dealing with Autism Spectrum and other neurodevelopmental disorders.  Dr. McLaren is the director of the supported employment program for people with autism and developmental disabilities at Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center.  Dr. McLaren is also the medical director for the Bureau of Developmental Services in New Hampshire and for NH START.  Dr. McLaren has received awards for clinical and teaching excellence. 

Dr. McLaren is a member of the Vulnerable Children’s Research Group at The Dartmouth Institute, which aims to improve mental health and social services for vulnerable children and their families through research, policy, partnerships with people with lived experience, and clinical services. 

Resources & References:

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Larson, F. V., Wagner, A. P., Jones, P. B., Tantam, D., Lai, M. C., Baron-Cohen, S., & Holland, A. J. (2017). Psychosis in autism: comparison of the features of both conditions in a dually affected cohort. Br J Psychiatry, 210(4), 269-275. doi:10.1192/bjp.bp.116.187682

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Zhou, Y., Kaiser, T., Monteiro, P., Zhang, X., Van der Goes, M. S., Wang, D., . . . Feng, G. (2016). Mice with Shank3 Mutations Associated with ASD and Schizophrenia Display Both Shared and Distinct Defects. Neuron, 89(1), 147-162. doi:10.1016/j.neuron.2015.11.023