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Spectrum: Autism Research News


Amanda Leigh Mascarelli

Freelance Writer,

Amanda Leigh Mascarelli is a freelance writer based in Denver, Colorado.
September 2010

Time perception problems may explain autism symptoms

by  /  20 September 2010

Individuals with autism have trouble perceiving the passage of time, and pairing sights and sounds that happen simultaneously, according to two new studies.

July 2010

Social interactions not rewarding for children with autism

by  /  23 July 2010

Children with autism have abnormally low brain activity in the ‘reward center’ of the brain when given money or shown a happy face, according to a study in Autism Research. These are the first imaging data to support the notion that children with autism derive less pleasure from social interactions compared with their healthy peers.

June 2010

Flu triggers schizophrenia-like features in monkeys

by  /  25 June 2010

Babies born to rhesus monkeys infected with the flu virus during pregnancy have significantly smaller brains than normal, and other brain abnormalities seen in schizophrenia, researchers have found. The study, published last month in Biological Psychiatry, provides the first evidence in non-human primates linking flu infection to a higher risk of schizophrenia.


Faulty connectivity found in mouse model of schizophrenia

by  /  18 June 2010

Mice engineered to carry a well-known risk factor for schizophrenia show disruptions in the connections between two brain regions that coordinate memory and learning. And these disruptions directly cause problems with working memory — the ability to actively hold information and to recall that information to make a decision, according to a study published in Nature.

April 2010

Autism not a fundamental problem of attention, study says

by  /  16 April 2010

Toddlers with autism pay less attention to faces than do healthy controls, but both groups give equal attention to objects, according to a study published in the Archives of General Psychiatry. The findings challenge the idea that individuals with autism have a generalized problem with attention, suggesting instead that they struggle with attending specifically to social stimuli, researchers say.

March 2010

Road maps of epigenome hold promise for autism

by  /  18 March 2010

Scientists have unveiled the first two comprehensive maps of the human epigenome, the set of chemical changes that affect gene expression without altering the underlying DNA code. Pinpointing epigenetic differences between healthy and diseased cells could reveal the roots of many conditions, including autism.

April 2008

Mouse model links epigenetics to autism

by  /  14 April 2008

Mice that lack a key regulatory protein known as Mbd1 show autism-like symptoms and could serve as a model for the disorder, according to a study published online on 1 April.