Multisite, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial of porcine secretin in autism

Thomas Owley, William Mcmahon, Edwin H. Cook, Tracy Laulhere, Mikle South, Lee Zellmer Mays, Elisa S. Shernoff, Janet Lainhart, Charlotte B. Modahl, Christina Corsello, Sally J Ozonoff, Susan Risi, Catherine Lord, Bennett L. Leventhal, Pauline A. Filipek

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

95 Scopus citations


Objective: To examine the efficacy of intravenous porcine secretin for the treatment of autistic disorder. Method: Randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, crossover design. Fifty-six subjects with autistic disorder received either a secretin or placebo infusion at baseline and the other substance at week 4. Subjects were given the Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule (ADOS) and other pertinent developmental measures at baseline and at weeks 4 and 8 to assess drug effects. Results: For the primary efficacy analysis, change of ADOS social-communication total score from week 0 to week 4, no statistically significant difference was obtained between placebo (-0.8 ± 2.9) and secretin groups (-0.6 ± 1.4; t 54 = 0.346, p < .73). The other measures showed no treatment effect for secretin compared with placebo. Conclusion: There was no evidence for efficacy of secretin in this randomized, placebo-controlled, double-blind trial.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1293-1299
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry
Issue number11
StatePublished - 2001
Externally publishedYes


  • Autistic disorder
  • Pervasive developmental disorder
  • Psychopharmacology
  • Secretin

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology


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