Contact Us

MIND Institute
Attention CHARGE Study
2825 50th Street
Sacramento, CA 95817




Our Sponsors

National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (2P01ES011269 and R01ES015359)

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (R833292 and R829388)

MIND Institute

Autism Speaks

The Allen Foundation

Cure Autism Now

National Insitute for Occupational Safety and Health









CHARGE Researchers & Advisory


Irva Hertz-Picciotto, Ph.D.
...........Principal Investigator, CHARGE study

Dr. Hertz-Picciotto is an environmental epidemiologist with over 150 scientific publications addressing environmental chemicals, including lead, arsenic, cadmium, pesticides, and organochlorines, and their risks for adverse pregnancy outcomes, deficits in early childhood development, cancer and cardiovascular disease. She founded the Center on Environmental Health and Susceptibility at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, serves on the editorial board of several scientific journals, has chaired half a dozen National Academy of Science and Institute of Medicine Committees, and sits on numerous state, national and international advisory committees, including the Food Safety in Europe Working Group of the International Life Sciences Institute, the U.S. EPA's Scientific Advisory Board, and the California Carcinogen Identification Committee. She has taught epidemiologic methods in four continents.

Robin Hansen, M.D.
...........Chief, Child Development and Child Protection Center

A developmental-behaviorist Pediatrician and researcher at UC Davis since 1985, Dr. Hansen previously served as chief of pediatrics at the JFK Child Development Center at the University of Colorado. She has cared for countless children with neurodevelopmental disorders, such as pervasive developmental disorder, autism, learning disorders and attention deficits. Dr. Hansen heads a multidisciplinary clinic that assesses and diagnoses children with neurodevelopmental disorders, plans and initiates intervention strategies, and works closely with the parents and families of her patients.

Judy Van de Water, Ph.D.

Judy Van de Water is an immunologist with primary research interests in the immunobiology of autism, including food sensitivity. Her detailed analyses for the CHARGE study include the interactions of the immune system with neuronal cells.

Peter Green, Ph.D.

Peter Green is a research engineer who studies water quality, water resources and air quality, including toxics and natural tracers. His analyses involve sensitive instrumentation that permits the detection of nearly every pollutant of concern at the lowest levels currently feasible.

Jeff Gregg, M.D.

Jeff Gregg is a pathologist and director of the MIND Institute’s genomics facility. He is an expert in microarray technology, which he uses to perform expression studies in order to identify genes associated with autism.

Frank Sharp, M.D.

Frank Sharp is a neurobiologist whose research focuses on genomics, neural cell injury, cell death and the blood genomics of neurological disease. He led the research team that provided the first evidence that blood genomics could detect pathological events.

Isaac Pessah, Ph.D.

Isaac Pessah is a molecular biologist and director of the UC Davis Center for Children’s Environmental Health and Disease Prevention. How xenobiotics, such as mercurials, halogenated aromatics and vaccine antigens, influence genes, immune function and neurodevelopment is a major focus of his research.

Community Advisory Council Members

Shabbir Ahmad, D.V.M., M.S., Ph.D.
...California Dept. of Public Health

Kelly Alston
...Autism Speaks

Joann Rupert Behm, M.S., R.N.
...Learning Disabilities Association-CA

Kathleen Berry
...Families for Early Autism Treatment (FEAT)

Andrew Cavagnaro Ph.D.
...Department of Developmental Services

Sophia A. Colamarino, Ph.D.
...Autism Speaks

Linda Copeland, M.D.
...Kaiser Permanente Autism Center

Brian Fellmeth, M.D., Ph.D.
...Parent Representative

Patrick Maher, M.D.
...North Bay Regional Center

Steve M. Graff, Ph.D.
...Tri-Counties Regional Center

Ron C. Huff, Ph.D.
...Alta California Regional Center

Rick Ingraham
...State Department of Developmental Services

Karlin Merwin
...Parent Representative

Mark Miller, M.D., M.P.H.
...Director, UCSF Pediatric Environmental Health Specialty Unit

Sharlyne Nomellini, M.A.
...Valley Mountain Regional Center

Pam Thomas, M.A.
...Regional Center of the East Bay

Lou Vismara, M.D.
...Parent Representative

Renee C. Wachtel, M.D., Director
...Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrics Children's Hospital, Oakland