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Spectrum: Autism Research News

Author

Angie Voyles Askham

News Writer

Angie Voyles Askham is a reporter for Spectrum, where she covers neural circuits and gene therapy, among other topics. She proposed and writes Spectrum Launch, a monthly newsletter for early-career researchers. Before joining Spectrum in 2020, she worked in radio journalism and academic publishing. Voyles Askham has a Ph.D. in neuroscience from NYU and a bachelor’s degree in neuroscience from Vanderbilt University. You can email her at [email protected] or find her on Twitter @avaskham.

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October 2020
Brain hemispheres color-coded.

Autism shares brain structure changes with other psychiatric conditions

by  /  1 October 2020

Atypical development of a particular type of neuron explains the structural similarities seen in the brains of people with autism, schizophrenia and other conditions, according to a new study.

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September 2020
White lab mouse sitting in a gloved hand.

Silencing ‘poison exon’ eliminates deadly seizures in mice

by  /  24 September 2020

A new treatment curbs deadly seizures in a mouse model of Dravet syndrome, a severe form of epilepsy.

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Micrograph of a mitochondria.

Fragile X syndrome traits may stem from leaky mitochondria

by  /  11 September 2020

Plugging a leaky mitochondrial membrane may help fragile X neurons to mature and function more efficiently.

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August 2020
Series of micrographs showing neurons with Rett syndrome mutations lacking liquid compartments around DNA.

DNA droplets may be key to Rett syndrome, researchers say

by  /  27 August 2020

Mutations in the MECP2 gene, which are associated with autism and Rett syndrome, interfere with a cell’s ability to form droplets of DNA that silence gene expression.

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Young child getting an asthma treatment from a doctor

Asthma common among children with autism, developmental disabilities

by  /  7 August 2020

A new survey shows that children with autism or other developmental disabilities in the United States are at least twice as likely to have asthma as their neurotypical peers are.

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Young child on her bed looking at a book.

Studies unravel diversity of traits tied to chromosome 16 mutations

by  /  3 August 2020

Two new analyses help to explain why mutations to the chromosomal region 16p11.2 can lead to autism, intellectual disability or language difficulties.

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July 2020
Micrograph of muscle cells

Some motor problems in autism may arise from cells outside brain

by  /  20 July 2020

The autism gene SHANK3 is crucial for the development and function of muscles and the motor neurons that control them.

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Selective enzyme blocker eases fragile X traits in mice

by  /  10 July 2020

A new treatment prevents seizures and improves memory in a mouse model of fragile X syndrome, according to a new study.

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four brain views with different areas lit up

Sensory networks overconnected early in autism

by  /  3 July 2020

Autistic toddlers have unusually strong connections between sensory areas of the brain.

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June 2020
Two fractal images side by side

Altered learning may drive social inattention in autistic children

by  /  18 June 2020

Children with autism have trouble learning that faces convey information, which may explain their tendency to miss social cues.

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