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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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May 2022

Structural brain changes foretell language skills in autistic infants

by ,  /  19 May 2022

Increased white-matter maturation tracks with stronger language abilities later in childhood, but the relationship with cortical thickness is less clear.

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Child in dark room with thermometer showing 100.8.

Fever doesn’t ease challenging traits in most autistic children

by  /  17 May 2022

The findings contradict a previous study, whose design may have been biased to find an effect.

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White lab mice bunched up in corner of cage.

Mouse models mirror cerebellum patterns seen in autism

by  /  12 May 2022

Animals with different autism-linked mutations share disruptions to the mTOR signaling pathway, pointing to a potential molecular mechanism for the atypical cerebellar development seen in some autistic people.

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Scientist Lucia Peixoto portrait.

Rising star: Lucia Peixoto, breaking down the interplay between sleep and autism

by  /  9 May 2022

The young researcher from Uruguay uses her expertise in genetics — and discipline as a former athlete — to untangle sleep’s role in neurodevelopmental conditions, one experiment at a time.

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A hand holds a compass against a blue background.

Spectrum Launch: How to conquer in-person conferences

by  /  5 May 2022

With INSAR 2022 on the horizon, some autism researchers are staring down their first ever in-person meeting — and wondering how to prepare.

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SYNGAP1 protein boosts cognition, blocks seizures in mice

by  /  4 May 2022

Ramping up levels of one isoform of the autism-linked protein reverses traits in model mice, a new study shows.

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April 2022

Mini biopsies point to source of lethal seizures in model mice

by  /  26 April 2022

Interneurons that fail to propagate electrical signals in mice that model Dravet syndrome may cause the animals, like people with the autism-linked condition, to die suddenly.

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Human head in profile has color auras, and a core made of stars, with a star outline making the shape of another person's head.

‘Theory of mind’ in autism: A research field reborn

by  /  8 April 2022

Scientists initially embraced the notion that autistic people have difficulty with ‘theory of mind’ — and some went so far as to assert that it explained the condition’s core traits. Many came to view it as passé, but aspects of the original idea are enjoying a renaissance.

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Biases skew behavioral predictions from brain scans

by  /  6 April 2022

Models trained on datasets that lack racial and ethnic diversity perform less accurately on brain scans from Black Americans than their white counterparts.

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Pandemic, politics temper INSAR’s in-person return

by  /  4 April 2022

Some autism researchers and clinicians say they are boycotting the upcoming annual meeting of the International Society for Autism Research in Austin, Texas, because of the state’s controversial health policies and lack of COVID-19 mitigation strategies.

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